At the time we were exploring the blocks together and using the student book very little. In Math-U-See, the instruction is supposed to take place through watching the video then practicing with the blocks, and the student workbook is only supposed to be practice and reinforcement. That's not how we've been using it at all lately, and I think that's been a big part of the growing math resistence and frustration. My kids simply don't need that much repetition to understand the concepts, and if I'd been using the curriculum as it is intended to be used instead of feeling like we had to complete a certain percentage of the workbook to be doing it "right" then things would have been going better.I do alter the lessons somewhat. After reading How Children Fail I have taken a lot of Holt's suggestions for the Cuisenaire rods and applied them to the Math-U-See blocks. This doesn't change the content of the lessons, just how I present them. I do a bit less instruction and a bit more guided exploration.
There were other posts covering my thoughts on homeschooling approach that reminded me of what I had thought and why I had thought it, and I'm glad I reread them. They've given me some inspiration for what I would like to do in the future.
On a more somber note, I realized as I reviewed the blog that the drop off in posting coincided with my descent into a bout of depression, anxiety and spiritual turmoil that I've only recently begun to emerge from. I hadn't really realized how long it had been since I had felt good.