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Singapore maths FAQs

Singapore maths FAQs

Choosing a maths program for homeschooling is a big decision. To help you, we’ve compiled this list of questions and answers about Singapore maths that we’ve been asked by homeschooling parents. We will update and add more as they come to us, so if your question isn’t answered here, please let us know. If you need more help, there is plenty more information in our Singapore Maths Hub, including comparisons with the Australian Curriculum.

Primary levels

Do I need the workbooks or is the textbook enough?

To get the full benefit and course requirements you will need the textbooks and workbooks. 

Is the Teacher’s Resource Book necessary?

No, it’s not necessary, but it does contain all the answers to the problems in the textbooks and workbooks.  It also provides you with a Scope and Sequence, which is handy for government homeschooling registration plans. It also has notes for teaching.

Can I use a teacher’s guide or home instructor guide from one program with another program?

No, each program has been published at a different time and each has its own guides. They are not inter-usable.

Do the Singapore maths “levels” match Australian school grades?

Not necessarily. If you need to know what level is best for your child, it’s best to do a placement test. You can find some here.

If my child shows proficiency in part A in a given level, but not B, can I start my child at part B?

We don’t recommend starting a Singapore maths level halfway through. It’s always best to make sure you cover the topics that level deems as important to prepare the child for other topics or future levels.

Are ebooks available for Singapore maths?

Yes, though there are pros and cons of ebooks. Shing Lee (publisher of New Syllabus Maths) has an online platform. Access to the ebooks is by a one-year subscription, so if you need access to the ebook for more than a year, you will need to renew the subscription for another year. This may work fine if you are confident of getting through the program in the time allotted.

Ebooks are generally cheaper, however, if you need to resubscribe or need to access the ebooks for other children, you will need to keep paying for each year you want to access the books. There is no printing function on the ebook platform.

Does Singapore maths match the Australian Curriculum requirements?

Generally, it does, and is ahead in all the basic topics. Probability is not taught until year 8 in Singapore maths. For more detailed information, please read our Singapore maths and Australian Curriculum comparisons for each grade level.

What’s the difference between the US 3rd Edition and Singapore 3rd Edition of primary maths?

The Primary Maths US 3rd Edition is the same as the Singapore Primary Maths 3rd Edition (now out of print) but replaces any money problems with US money and adds in US measures (it also keeps metric measures).

What is Bar Modelling used in Singapore maths?

Bar modelling is a visual method of finding unknowns in equations, especially word problems. It is very useful for younger students and builds a good foundation for solving more complex problems when they are older. You can find out how to do it in this video.

Highschool levels

Is the workbook necessary?

For the Normal Academic (NA) series, the workbook is necessary as it has problems that are necessary to meet the full course requirements. However, the workbook for the 7th Edition (Accelerated) is not necessary and contains extra work for extension.

Is the Teacher’s Resource Book necessary?

The TRB for highschool levels contains fully worked solutions to all the textbook problems (and workbook for NA edition) as opposed to just answers, which are at the back of the textbook. For most people, it is necessary to have the TRB to assist in teaching and that’s why we sell both the textbook and TRB together. 

The TRB book also contains teaching notes and a Scope and Sequence.

Does Singapore highschool maths match the Australian Curriculum requirements?

It depends on which stream you choose: NSM 7th Edition (Accelerated) or the Normal Academic. All topics are covered but some are taught earlier and some later. 

General questions about Singapore maths

How good is Singapore maths?

Singapore students consistently perform well in maths in international assessments, and always exceed Australian students. Hyperbole aside, this news article comments on some of the latest statistics.

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