Life of Fred is written by Dr Stanley Schmidt, a retired math teacher who brings his joy of math alive with stories about Fred, a five-year-old professor at KITTENS University.
We were first introduced to Life of Fred by a friend who had used it to help her high school student with algebra. She had such praise for these books that I wanted to check them out for my struggling math student. Our local library had recently purchased the first four books in the elementary series, so we started with Apples. Though at first, I felt this was way too simple for my 3rd and 4th grade students, I found there was a lot of what we here at home call ‘sneaky learning’ in them. We learned about manners, geography, and the titanic as well as math (including some things not taught until algebra in other curricula). My children enjoy reading the sometimes-wacky stories about Fred and his doll Kingie. I felt they were written at a good reading level for my 3rd grader, not too hard but with some new words that challenged her. She also loved doing the time-to-play sections, which is where you apply what was taught—by far her favorite part.
We enjoyed Life of Fred so much that we added it to our homeschool collection. Though we don’t use Life of Fred as our main math curriculum (we use teaching textbooks for that), it is a great supplement for us. It helps to show the children where the math they are learning is used in the real world, and gives us a more fun and relaxing way to dig deeper into math. Not to mention all the sneaky learning that these books are filled with.