Thursday, June 22, 2017

Unlock Math : Online Full Geometry Course

My Middlest will be looking at the PSAT in the fall, and in order to do that he needs to get a bit of geometry under his belt (the path we took with my daughter was the natural progression of Algebra I and then Algebra II, however, that meant that we were not as prepared for the test as we might have liked). In light of that, the timing for our review of UnLock Geometry  for UnLock Math couldn't have come at a much better time. 

Here is a screenshot of the first few units of UnLock Geometry~ there are 15 Units altogether. You can see the rest of this screen at the UnLock Geometry link above. :) 

*Disclaimer~ To be fair, I will say we did have a couple of timing issues, totally unrelated to UnLock Math~ cyberspace has been eating emails that belong in my inbox (So it took me awhile to figure out that I hadn't received my log-in email~ not their issue~ I've had multiple emails not show up in the past month or so), and our internet has been frustratingly slow for almost e-v-e-r-y-t-h-i-n-g (we're talking *almost* pre-1990's get up and get a cup of coffee while waiting for one page to load slow...). Due to other commitments he could only look at "loading" wheels/bars for so long before we needed to move on to other things. I think we need a new router, but haven't had time to address that issue just yet because... life. 

Now~ if this were a textbook review, I wouldn't need that disclaimer~ no techie issues to cause trouble there~ However, I also wouldn't have the benefits this program provides. I personally don't feel like geometry is a subject where I could inspire someone to love math. I can puzzle through to help figure out where answers went wrong, but I'm not a higher math teacher. Thankfully, with UnLock Math that doesn't really matter, because THEY provide the teacher, the computer interface (which is neat and clean, and easy to understand when your internet is working properly), and the assessment and grading ~ I really don't have to do anything beyond making sure that assignments are actually being completed.              
UnLock Math provides a way to check and see what day each assignment was finished, how long it took, and how well the student did. There aren't many parental options beyond looking at (downloading and printing if you like) the grade-book that is linked to your student's account. I was actually taken aback at how little there was for *me* to do... 

The one time we did run into a glitch (which again, took far longer than anticipated to get around to dealing with because of the timing of life, combined with agonizing internet speed), Matthew ( the founder of UnLock Math) happened to be  accessible via the online chat button at the same late hour that we were trying to troubleshoot. Amazing customer service, in my book! I understand that he is very quick to reply to messages sent as well, if he doesn't happen to be online at the same time. At any rate, he was able to quickly and easily solve the issue we had, and my son was able to unlock the next section in order to proceed. *Geometry is the newest course available, and as with any new program, I expect a bug or two to show up  for the first bunch or two of users. 

In the screen above you see the basic set-up of the program~ 
  • Warm Up consists of... warm up problems ~ 5 quick, fairly simple problems to get your brain warmed up~ they take about 1 minute to complete. 
  • The big "UnLock" screen is where the video lesson is watched~ about 5 minutes (We decided on the earlier lessons that he could skip the video and continue to the practice problems (Opening them in another window), only returning to watch the video if he ran into something he didn't already know.
  • Practice Problems ~ 10 problems on the current topic ~ with explanations after most of them~ Here's an example where... oops~ made qt plural... (even though the math was right). The good news is that if there are silly mistakes made like this, your student will (hopefully) learn from them, and then have the opportunity to do another set of practice problems if they want to increase their score. 

  • Stay Sharp ~ another 10 questions on the topic ~

  • Challenge Question ~ This is the only section where there are no second chances- 1 question! 
There are quizzes after every two lessons, and a Test at the end of the Unit.

So far my son is doing well and appreciates the way the lessons are set up. I like that he isn't given too much at once. Occasionally the explanations are a little longer and complicated (for the way *my* brain works), but then they are distilled to the simplicity that I understand. (See the bolded sentence at the bottom of this screenshot...)
I think that if he is diligent with this course through some of the summer and early fall he should be well prepped for most geometry questions on the PSAT this year. Time will tell... ;)

Not So Nutty Nitty Gritty 

  • Company: UnLock Math
  • Product: UnLock Geometry   
  • Ages: High School 
  • Price: $49 monthly or $299 annually (50% sibling discount)
    • Use my referral link to receive $50 off a one year subscription to any of the Algebra programs. Special link expires September 14, 2017
You can visit UnLock Math on the following Social Media Pages:
Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest

Please click the banner below to visit the TOS Homeschool Review Crew and see what others had to say about Unlock Geometry as well as UnLock Pre-Algebra, UnLock Algebra I, and UnLock Algebra II.  As always, I hope that this review was useful to you as you choose where best to spend your homeschool budget.
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