Mr. D Math to the Rescue: An Online Homeschool Math Review

Do you ever wish that you could just wave a magic wand and all of your teen’s math frustrations would disappear? Do you wish that you had a friend who could step in and guide your teen through the ups and downs of learning math with the same care and compassion that you bring to your homeschool? Mr. D is that friend! Within moments of logging in to our first live Mr. D Math class, I knew that Mr. D was everything my teens need in a math teacher.

I was given access to the  Pre-Algebra class  without charge and compensated for my time to write this article. However, I was not required to write a favorable review. The views that I share here are my own.

I was given access to the Pre-Algebra class without charge and compensated for my time to write this article. However, I was not required to write a favorable review. The views that I share here are my own.

Mr. D says, “Math is a language, a systematic means of communicating by the use of sounds or conventional symbols.” The idea is simple, yet powerful. Math is a language and Mr. D speaks the language of math in a way that makes senses to teens!

As my daughter and I dove into that first live class, I was immediately grateful for the chance to review the service.  I am always on the lookout for new ways to engage my kids, especially in math. It seems that their needs change almost as quickly as their socks, so I love to know our options in order to be prepared for when our math approach needs a change. This has been especially true as my little ones have turned into teens. They are more keenly aware of what works for them and what their own goals are for the future.

For that reason, I was thrilled to discover that Mr. D Math has been approved by the NCAA! We have a budding baseball player over here whose dream it is to play ball beyond graduation. I’m glad to know that we have options that will help him continue to homeschool and meet the requirements of the colleges that he may one day consider.

Mr. D Math is NCAA approved!

The following courses are NCAA approved:
Algebra I
Algebra II
Pre-Calculus with Trigonometry  


Mr. D is an Online Math Teaching Wizard!

Mr. D. knows his stuff and knows how to relate it to kids! It’s one thing to be skilled in math. It’s an entirely different gift to be able to explain math in a way that is inviting and encouraging to kids! Mr. D does this! The online classroom is warm and inviting as Mr. D encourages questions and effort!

Mr. D Math is Flexible!

Mr. D allows us to select the format that works for us. We can select from the self-paced program with generous email support from Mr. D and his staff, online curriculum and online class, or online curriculum and in-person class. We also have the ability to take Mr. D with us wherever we go! This means we can still carve out time for a little math exploration when we’re out for the day; at the library, waiting for swim practice to wrap up, or settled onto a blanket at the park. We were even able to download the videos and classwork to take with us! No more excuses for sweeping math to the side. We can enjoy a day out and still meet our assignment goals!  

Revisiting a topic and getting extra help is easy with Mr. D Math! A weekly extra-help session is available, and we are able to re-watch the lesson videos as many times as we need to! I love that my daughter can master the concepts of Pre-Algebra before moving on to Algebra!

Mr. D. is engaging, encouraging, and energetic!

All these traits that fly out the window when I’m tired or overwhelmed. Mr. D brings a calm, yet invigorating presence to the math lesson. Whether we were learning from a pre-recorded video or participating in a live class, we found our math anxiety melting away. At the same time, Mr. D’s enthusiasm for math is contagious! We found ourselves smiling along as we listened to the lesson. Math and smiling had previously been an nonexistent combination!

Mr. D Answers Questions Quickly!

Unlike many curriculum options, Mr. D is available to answer questions! With a quick email, my questions were sent and the response was typically received within minutes! Whether this was a question about a Pre-Algebra problem or a more general question about using the classroom, Mr. D’s replies were always speedy! As a busy mom, who juggles many tasks, I was grateful for the prompt answers to my questions. This meant that we stayed focused on math rather than letting our attention slide on to something else!

Mr. D Makes Math Easy!

It was a privilege to dive into Mr. D’s Pre-Algebra class with my daughter. Not only were the math lessons engaging and easy to follow for my daughter, the program was user-friendly for me! Mr. D takes the guesswork out of what skills my daughter needs to prepare for Algebra, and allows me to enjoy the journey with her!

Mr. D is a friend to homeschoolers!

Personalized, Online Math Education with CTC Math

Managing the math education of multiple kids is daunting to say the least.  We've curriculum hopped for the past 10 years of homeschooling, always in search of the best program to accommodate the learning styles in front of me.   We'd meandered from program to program, piecing things together, in the attempt to find the perfect fit.  Along the way, I found myself wishing, hoping for a way to keep track of where we'd been and where we were going. 

Enter CTC Math
Exhale deeply. 
Find peace with Math.

That's what happened.  As soon as my account was activated, I hopped on to take a peek and I immediately saw how this program could work for all five of my school-age kids (grades k-8). 

{Please Note: I received a CTC Math membership free in order to give a review, and was compensated for my time.  I was not, however, required to give a positive review, and all opinions are my own.}

CTC Math Tech Savvy Visual Learner

The Tech-Savvy or Visual Learner

My 14 year old loves working online.  He finds videos extremely helpful when he wants to learn something new.  So CTC was a perfect fit for him.  The videos included in each lesson are straight-forward, yet thorough, providing several examples of the concept being taught.  Listening to the instructor while watching the math unfold on the screen is really effective for the visual learner that he is.  If he feels he needs to hear an explanation again, he simply replays that portion of the video.  When he's ready, he moves on to the problems. 

The Gets-Bored-Easily Learner

My 12 year old definitely lives by the motto "variety is the spice of life" and she approaches math the same way.  She prefers to learn from a variety of sources and styles.  CTC Math is the perfect addition to her math menu.  When she needs a break from the books, we hop online and find which CTC lessons will support what she is learning.  The program makes this so easy!  It is searchable and completely customizable.  While some programs allow access to only one grade level, CTC allows a student to work at multiple levels, creating a completely personalized math education. 

CTC Math Visual Learner

The Independent Learner

There are 2 ways to access the lessons in CTC Math.  The parent/teacher can assign tasks for the student to work through or the student can work through lessons of his choosing.  Either of these can be done following the scope and sequence of the program or in any order necessary.  These features allow the individual needs of the learner to be met while still providing a space for independent learning.  My 8 year old was on a roll with multiplication.  Instead of having to stop at what would have been the end on the second grade curriculum, he was able to roll along into the higher levels, all on his own.  I simply showed him how to search for multiplication lessons and sent him on his way.

The No-Nonsense Learner

If you have a student who is easily overwhelmed by busy workbook page or one who likes to just get it done, CTC Math is simple and straight-forward, providing an effective balance of instruction and practice.  The videos are uncluttered, without any unnecessary music or drawings.  The practice problems are follow the same simplicity, one problem at a time with immediate feedback as to the accuracy of the answer.  This is a powerful feature for students who learn best without extra stimuli, allowing them to focus wholly on that one problem without distraction.  It also helps to move things along for the "get 'er done" learner. 

CTC Math Confidence Building

The Confidence-Building Learner

We've all got one of these at some point or another.  The learner who needs to build up some confidence with a specific math concept or with math in general.  My ten year old is one of these learners right now.  He benefits from a hands-on approach and I was skeptical that I would find an online program that would meet this need. But CTC did!  As he reviewed place value, he was able to manipulate base ten blocks with a right-click of the mouse.  When he practiced rounding, a notoriously tricky concept, CTC provided a number line to bring the skill from the abstract to the concrete.  And because it was all online, my felt more "grown-up" while he practiced the concepts that tripped him up earlier in the year.  I was thankful that CTC provided him with the opportunity to review without feeling condescending or babyish, helping him to make progress without feeling like he was completing remedial work.  CTC provides an unlimited amount of time to work on each problem.  Nothing destroys confidence more unnecessarily than not completing a problem "in time."  The fluency will come as the confidence increases.  CTC builds confidence!

CTC Math meets the needs of all of us!

CTC Math family

Not only does CTC Math meet the individual needs of my kids, but it meets mine too.  It is easy to use and allows me to customize a week's worth (or more) of math instruction for multiple kids in a short amount of time.  I can hop on at any time to see their progress or edit their assignments.  For our family this is a win multiple times over.  Each child can use CTC Math as it best fits their needs and I can facilitate that with ease. 

Want to see how well CTC Math can work for your family?  Try it FREE for 4 weeks! 

Once you fall in love with it, save 60% off the homeschoolers price and get 6 extra months FREE!  That's a year and a half of personalized math instruction!

An Accidental, Mathematical, Poetical Teatime

“That’s my parawewogram!”

“No, it’s mine!  See?!”

“Oh, yeah. {giggle} Mine is hidin’ under the poetwy book.”  {giggle, giggle}

They’re arguing over a parallelogram?  They’re arguing over a parallelogram!  Woohoo!  This is big news!  Not the arguing.  That happens everyday. But the fact that these little ones even care about parallelograms at all. That’s the best news of the week. 

But I must confess, I didn’t teach them this.  It wasn’t some heroic effort on my part that blessed them with the knowledge of the parallelogram.  If anything, it was because I was lazy! 

You see, I’ve got six kids ranging in age from three to thirteen, and sometimes homeschooling all of them just overwhelms me.  Keeping up with six unique learners takes everything that this introverted mama has.  Sometimes I just run out of juice.  Do you know what I mean?  Have you ever felt that way?  That’s what happened on the parallelogram morning.

Every lesson doesn’t need to be laid out in the plan book.  The best learning happens, often by accident, when good things come together to create a spark of connection.  That’s what I learned on the parallelogram morning.

I woke up late, scrambling into the morning.  The list of learning activities I had planned for the day would require much more time than my late start would allow.  As I poured a strong cup of tea and dolloped it with honey, my phone dinged.  Another reminder from the library.  “That whole stack of books you took out.  They’re due. Yesterday.” 

In the first five minutes of my morning, I was greeted with all the balls I’d dropped.  Late library books, late nights and late mornings.  Late.  Late.  Late. 

I cheered myself with a few bites of chocolate while I piled the books onto the kitchen table - mostly math themed poetry books I’d been using to plan a co-op class.  I’ve homeschooled long enough to know that this day was headed one of two ways: into the nothing-goes-right kind of day or into the let’s-make-the-most-of-it-and-see-what-happens kind of day.  The choice was mine. 

Seeing those math books stacked up, knowing we needed to make the most of our morning, I grasped forinspiration.  Thankfully, I found a thread of it and held on tight.  We’ll do math and poetry together, all together. 

That’s when a little bit of magic happened.  At least that’s how I prefer to see the chaos that followed. 

Tangrams were dug out of the back of the closet.  Muffins baked in the oven, dangerously close to burning, while pages spewed from my printer onto the floor.  The geometric coloring sheets I’d bookmarked the week before were saving my day. 

In the midst of all this distraction I heard, “That’s my parawewogram!”

It stopped me in my tracks.  I braced for the argument that I expected to come.  And then melted as the exchanged played out.  My kids were learning from each other simply because I was lazy and hit the snooze button.  Simply because I had chosen a let’s-make-the-most-of-it-and-see-what-happens kind of day.  Simply because there was a spark of connection between my children and the engaging materials which were sitting way-too-close to a puddle of almond milk on the kitchen table.  Learning was happening despite my scatteredness. 


One by one children found their places around the table, lured by the smell of cinnamon.  One by one, they picked up colored pencils and tangrams, rulers and poetry books.  Mathematical riddles, disguised as poems, were passed around along with warm muffins.  Belly laughs and quiet moments of concentration took turns dancing through our kitchen.  Our morning, though late to start, was long in the best sort of way. 

Math and poetry had accidentally collided.  And for that, I have to thank the snooze button. 

Want your own mathematical, poetical teatime? 
I’ve got the tools for you listed below.


The Stack of Overdue Library Books ( plus a few favorites)

The Best of Times, Gregory Tang
Edgar Allan Poe’s Pie, J. Patrick Lewis
Marvelous Math, Lee Bennett Hopkins
Math Curse, Jon Scieszka
Math Talk: Mathematical Ideas in Poems for Two Voices, Theoni Pappas
The Grapes of Math, Greg Tang
Math for All Seasons, Greg Tang

Our Favorite Math "Toys"

I love to "accidentally" leave math manipulatives and games out on the kitchen table.  My early risers find them there and dig into some before dawn learning.  As the rest of the crew wakes and meanders into the living room, games are underway.    They made a great addition to our poetry teatime too!

The Geometric Coloring Designs

These coloring pages are open-ended and created a lot of math-focused discussion at the level of each child.  We talked about patterns, angles, similarities and differences in shapes and lots more.


What are your favorite ways to sneak some math into your day?  Share in the comments!