Things to know when planning your maths curriculum

At Education Reformation, we sell various types of Singapore maths curriculum. Singapore maths programs have consistently produced the top maths students in the world and are a good choice for home educators. Here we outline a few things to know when choosing a homeschool maths program.

What makes Singapore maths different?­­

Singapore maths is based on a three-step learning process beginning with concrete hands-on learning, moving to visual representation and progressing to the abstract concept (pen and paper problem solving). This middle step of a pictorial approach involves children drawing diagrams and using manipulatives. Singapore maths programs move at a faster rate than traditional maths programs and by Grade 6, are ahead of the Australian National Curriculum by about 6-12 months.

For more in depth information on how Singapore maths works, watch these videos produced by Marshall Cavendish.

How do I compare Singapore maths with the Australian National Curriculum?

There is no need to worry about whether your child is keeping up if you are using Singapore maths, as it is often ahead of the Australian grade levels. To check on how the concepts line up, read through the product pages on our website, and compare them to the ANC grade concept descriptions .  I think you will be quite satisfied you are on the right track with Singapore maths.

How do I place my child in the right level of Singapore maths?

Placement tests can be found here. The tests for the 3rd Edition may be used for all the Singapore maths programs we sell.

Which Singapore maths program do I choose?

This is probably our most asked question. How do the programs differ? In order to choose the Singapore maths program that’s right for you need to prioritise the features. Do you want metric measures only or imperial as well? Does American money bother you, or do you want the same money denominations as Australian currency? Do you want a program that is currently used in Singapore? Is price important? The answers to these will determine which program you choose and we have put together a table of these and additional features to help you.

Currently we offer only two Singapore maths programs for primary grades: New Syllabus Primary Maths and Primary Maths US 3rd Edition. Preschool maths books are also available.


Singapore maths buying guide

FeaturesNew Syllabus
Primary Maths
Primary Maths
3rd Ed
Primary Maths
US 3rd Ed
Metric measuresYesYesYes
US measuresNoNoYes
Same money
Currently used
in Singapore
Teacher’s guideYesYesYes
YesYesYes – only metric
Currently in printYesNoYes


Extras to enhance your child’s learning

Manipulatives play an important part in teaching Singapore maths and help with the three step concrete>visual>abstract learning process. Base ten blocks, counters, connecting blocks and more provide a tactile approach so necessary to young students.

The Math Whizz series is written for parents and provides problems that are outside or beyond the usual maths curriculum. It teaches higher-order questions and trains students to be confident with maths.

Challenging Word Problems train your child to translate real life scenarios into abstract maths problems. Word problems become more prevalent in the Singapore highschool texts, and are a strength of Singapore programs. These books can be used with any maths program.

Extra Practice books give just that. Perfect for either a struggling child who needs more opportunity to grasp a given concept, or for a fast moving student that could use some extension work or slowing down. Very handy to have on your book shelf for travelling, when extra work is needed, or for review.


If your child loves maths and could do with more challenge, consider our gifted program books.

What about highschool maths?

If your child has completed any Singapore maths program satisfactorily up to Level 6, they are now ready for Secondary maths. New Syllabus Maths (Secondary) and New Maths Counts are the two programs we have available.

New Syllabus Maths 7th Edition is a well organised accelerated program providing three levels of skill: Basic, Intermediate and Advanced. Exercises are divided into problems targeted at these levels, as well as Review and Revision exercises for each chapter. Although the explanations are clear and well presented,  the Teacher’s Resource Book is highly recommended, if not essential, for comprehensive teaching as it has all the fully worked solutions to the textbook exercises. (Answers are provided at the back of the textbook.)

The workbook is optional, as there are enough exercises in the textbook to complete a year’s work, especially with three levels of skill provided. Tests are not provided in any Singapore maths programs, as these are teacher/school led, however some families treat the revision exercises or workbook exercises as tests. There are 4 books which take the student from Year 7 to Year 11 (Book 3 is roughly equivalent to Australian Year 10).

This course is suited to maths-inclined students or slightly above average students who cope well with maths. However, it can be slowed down or you can assign fewer exercises as it suits your child. It has more problems in each exercise than the Normal Academic stream (see below).

New Syllabus Maths Normal Academic covers years 7 to 11 in five books. This program is lighter than the 7th Edition course with fewer problems in the exercises, and going at a slower pace. It does not include Practice Now problems after each Worked Example (as does the 7th Ed.). This course is better suited to non-maths inclined students.



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Education Reformation

Singapore maths and homeschool curriculum


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