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Teaching Excel Math

Building math competency is like building a house. Without a good foundation, it is difficult to ensure the higher levels are secure. You'll discover our spiraling approach ensures students have continual exposure and high retention.

Excel Math was developed to enhance your teaching skills, not to change or replace them. Minimal in-service training is needed. You can adjust it to the needs of each class.

Lesson Sheets (in three parts)

Excel Math uses daily Lesson Sheets for each student. Both sides of the Lesson sheet are reproduced in the Teacher Edition, on the page facing the lesson plan.

These lessons are much more than just math worksheets. Using strategically placed spaced repetition, Excel Math gives you a proven approach to teach math concepts for long-term retention, with powerful features and advantages, including our unique Spiraling Strategy.

  • Pages are numbered at the bottom center. The first digit indicates grade level. The remaining digits make up the page number. For Example: 1261 = First Grade Page 261; 3185 = Third Grade Page 185:
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  • Most Lessons are divided into three main sections: Lesson, Guided Practice, and Homework.

Lesson – on the left

Each concept is taught then gradually refreshed throughout the year as it is integrated with previously-taught concepts.

  • Location - Front left side of the Lesson Sheet

  • Objective - Described at the top left corner of the page.

  • Time Required - The lesson can be taught in about 10-20 minutes.

  • Review – The first 4-6 weeks of each grade level are review. This work may seem easy, but students gain confidence so they are ready when difficult concepts are introduced.

  • Lesson Plans - Provided in the Teacher Edition. This is not a script; it includes suggestions for presentation of the objective, teaching the lesson, and use of manipulatives and brainteasers.

  • Teaching styles - Classroom situations vary, so feel free to adapt Excel Math to fit your class and your teaching style. For tips on integrating Excel Math as a core or supplement, watch our videos.


Guided Practice – on the back

Designed for students, so they can use the concepts they've learned already. Students work independently, raising their hands when they have questions and checking their work using the CheckAnswer. The teacher can focus on those students needing personal attention and assistance.

  • Location - On the back of the Lesson Sheet.
  • Length of Time – 20 to 30 minutes as class time allows. The students do not copy problems out of their books so more time is spent doing on the math.
  • Fit Excel Math to the needs of your class - If the students are having difficulty with a concept, take time to work that concept again before moving on to the next lesson.
  • Total Mastery - Guided Practice is designed to provide constant review of previously-taught concepts. You do not need to attain total mastery for everyone the first day a concept is taught.


Homework – on the right

Teaches responsibility for taking a Lesson Sheet home, doing the work, and returning with it the next day. This also involves the family in their students' education.

  • Location – Front, right side of the Lesson sheet. If necessary, ask the students to fold the Lesson sheet in half, so they can concentrate on either the Lesson or the Homework, without being distracted.

  • Length of time – It should not take more than 15 minutes each day.

  • Provided - 50 Lessons (30%) in Kindergarten and 124 Lessons (80%) for grades 1-6.

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Assess the students' mastery of concepts taught 2-3 weeks before the test. We do not test on concepts taught the week of the test.

  • Tests Provided – Kindergarten has 6 tests, Grade 1 has 18 tests, and Grades 2-6 have 30 tests.

  • Answer Keys – the Teacher Edition contains the answers for all tests. A table near the answer key shows from which lesson each test question was derived.

  • Quarterly Tests – These tests have questions on both sides of the page and bubble-in spaces in the right-hand column. If you would like to help students prepare for standardized testing, ask them to transfer their answers to the bubbles.

  • Table of Concepts - On each test page in the Teacher Edition, we include tables that indicate which objective or concept each test question is designed to assess. The table also shows in which lesson the concept is first introduced. Use this table to find out which concepts to review when you find your students have trouble with a particular test question.
Weekly Test
Quarterly Test
Quarterly Test
Weekly Test

Create A Problem: Back of Test Pages

This feature enables students to express their own understanding of a story problem. It merges math and literacy.

We start with simple stories and give students a chance to observe what is happening in the story. They then use those observations to solve problems. Later in the curriculum we ask students to create a problem or two, and make up a CheckAnswer. Finally, students are able to finish a story in their own words, and write several problems about their story ending. This demonstrates mastery AND integration. The format of the page allows longer answers, along with charts, graphs and other expressions of the students' solutions.

Create A Problem

We help you teach math with Spiraling and CheckAnswer:

  • Excel Math SPIRALING – is a sophisticated process of introduction, reinforcement and assessment. It leads to mastery and long-term competency for each student. We continually bring in new topics, while refreshing math concepts they've learned before. Students aren't tested on a subject until they've had multiple chances to succeed in Guided Practice and Homework.

  • Excel Math Lesson Sheets are much more than just math worksheets. Using strategically placed spaced repetition, Excel Math gives you a proven approach to teach math concepts for long-term retention. These lessons include powerful features and advantages, including our unique Spiraling Strategy:
  • Excel Math CHECKANSWER – our unique self-assessment enables students to confirm their work. The CheckAnswer process helps students develop confidence and good work strategies. They solve a set of 3-5 problems (A-C), add the answers and see if the sum matches the CheckAnswer (D). If it does, they move on. If not, they go back and re-check their calculation.