Unsolicited Raves from Readers . . .
Letters not edited for spelling.
Dear Mr. Schmidt,
I have to say that even though I am the mother and the teacher, logic is something I will look forward too. I majored in art and logic in college. All of my children absolutely love your books and I am filled with gratitude that you took time to write back to my daughter. I wish you could see the huge smile that lit up her face when she found out she actually got a response from you. We plan to collect all of the books you have out and any future ones.
My autistic child who is the oldest thrives with this math program. I was making it no where with him until we started this.
Keep up the good work :)
Hello! I am a curriculum consultant and yesterday I tested a homeschooler that uses Life of Fred. I wanted you to know that in the Calculations section of the WJ-III Tests of Achvt (the top nationally-normed standardized achvt test) this student scored a 99.9 National Percentile RANK! This is one of the highest scores I have had in this section is 12 years of testing. I have had 99.9 but it is rare, very rare! Maybe only 5 in 12 years of testing. She had excellent problem solving abilities as well, and performed above average in Applied Problems. One of my daughters just finished up the 7th grade Teaching Textbook Curriculum today, she used Horizons til 4th and then jumped to 7th grade in TT. I took a look at Life of Fred after the scores and I was very impressed.
Dear Dr. Schmidt,
I'm writing you today to let you know the LOF series is the only math series my son has used from Algebra through Calculus. On his recent ACT test, he received a 36 in math. One of his sub-test scores was a 17, so we assume he missed ONE math question on the whole test. Not too bad!
He also had a 730 on the math portion of the TASC test (the new GED test). (500 is passing and 800 is perfect.)
Thank you for providing a rock solid math program.
We are smitten with the math curriculum called Life of Fred. It is fascinating and fun, it teaches a ton, not only about math, but also about a broad spectrum of studies as well. In the very first book called “Life of Fred: Apples,” kids learn about Orion’s belt and deciduous trees. How’s that for interesting and full-featured? The curriculum covers preschool all the way through college. Lessons are presented in chapters with engaging stories and real-world math application. It teaches logic, not just math facts. My second grader is already dabbling in algebra. My kids are downright enthusiastic about math, and that was not the case before we met Fred. My guys can’t get enough of it. They actually get excited and beg to do more. They both went into hysterics when their new Life of Fred t-shirts came in the mail. Would that all subjects could be this effective and enjoyable.
Dear, dear, Dr. Schmidt,
Every now and then, I have this uncontrollable urge to thank you for all your work on the Life of Fred series and how it has impacted our lives.
The great news is that I have shared LoF with a fellow homeschooler, and she is reveling in it with her son. He recently had a surgery which wiped out the part of his brain that can do math, and he is totally digging Fred and all his antics. Like all Fred kids he is begging for more and learning tons along the way. He is also, of course, feeling mighty smart because, as we know, these are more than just math books. They contain nuggets of wisdom that broadcast o'er many disciplines, but it is done in a way whereby you don't realize you are learning stuff. Or, rather, you don't realize that learning is not supposed to be so much fun.
I was delighted to see that you have a book on Elementary Physics. My seven-year-old who can't read a single word to save his life but who is a whiz at sciency stuff and who has already made it to the middle of your Edgewood book can't wait until he's learned enough to read your physics book. He knows what physics is and has always used words beyond his years despite his struggle with what no doubt must be dyslexia. Thanks to you, it is not hard for me to convince him that he is rather bright because he can use big words and is even starting to do algebra.
Dear Mr. Schmidt,
I want to tell you how brilliant these books are. My daughter has a pretty severe dyslexia along with working memory issues. When we pulled her from public school she had just finished third grade, yet could not do basic addition. Even simple math was a tearful endeavor. Because of her working memory issues, the drill and kill approach does not work—her brain just cannot retrieve that kind of information. We went back to Apples and began afresh, and she has just devoured your books! Math now involves giggles, requests to do more chapters, and she tells the stories to her friends and family! It has been a complete turnaround.
My oldest is a freshman in high school, and has always been gifted in math. When we began homeschooling, we checked out the Beginning Algebra book for him from our local university library—and it has kicked his rear end. He is so used to plug-and-play formulas, that he is unable to think about math or problem solve. So we have taken him back to the Intermediate Series, which he loves, to get the foundations of thinking about math in a new and practical manner. He is really enjoying it, getting through five or six chapters a day. Of all the things your books teach, I think this is what I appreciate most—they make math practical and challenge students to develop problem-solving skills as much as they do in learning basic arithmetic. Thank you so much for the time and the energy that you have poured into these books—you are literally changing lives with them!
Dear Dr. Schmidt,
Permit us to gush more about your Geometry book...
Love the way your "Your Turn to Play" leads students to ahhhaaaa moments before theorems are introduced .... pure poetry!
Dear Dr. Schmidt,
When a teacher at my school noticed how good I was, he asked me,"How are you so good at math?" I responded to him that Life of Fred was the key to excellence in math. I showed him the book. He took note of the title, the great low price, and your name. He now vows to keep up with me using the best math book ever. Because of your books, my brain functions in math 1000% better. So I thank you for creating the best math book ever. THANK YOU!!!!!
Dear Dr. Schmidt,
My son has always loved math. As a toddler, instead of drawing pictures, he would write pages of math problems. When he went to kindergarten, he enjoyed doing square roots and long division. He commonly did math worksheets for fun, and continues to do so. His desire for learning more complex math was not met at school at all.
When we were homeschooling for a year, we were introduced to your books. I would like to say THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU!! He LOVES your books! He reads them and re-reads them. He so enjoys your humor and Fred's adventures. My husband and I appreciate that your books have allowed him to advance through math at his own pace and make him responsible for learning the concepts as he reads. (He loves your books so much he actually asked for them for Christmas!)
Thank you so much for sharing your expertise in a way that has resonated with my son, as well as countless other kids. We are truly grateful that we were introduced to Fred.
Dear Mr. Stanley,
Dear Stan -
I am a homeschool mom to a 12 year old daughter with learning challenges. We have struggled with math since she was little, until a tiny little math teacher named "Fred" came into our lives.
For all the searching I have done for math curriculum over the years, I don't know why I had never heard of Life of Fred Math until about 2 months ago, but there it is. She announced to me last night that math is her FAVORITE subject. In no way did I ever expect her to tell me that math is her favorite anything!
Dear Dr. Schmidt,
Just to let you know, I LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE the Life of Fred math books!!!!!!!!!!!!! Seriously, I have had no success whatsoever with traditional math books, but these are amazingly clear, and in terms I can picture and understand. I find myself finding all these random math problems in everyday life, just like Fred does. Thank you sooooooooo much! Oh, and now I know what alliteration and onomatopoetic means - among other wonderful words, and economics, biology, and even history. God bless you for your contributions to society. : ) No, seriously, God bless you. He has used your books to bless me so much. And I really appreciate your boldness in putting His truth all throughout the books, and portraying it as a normal part of life. Books like that - especially school books - are so rare these days.
Dear Stan (aka Fred)
History was my favorite subject. Then I got life of Fred. This is an awesome curriculum.
Dear Mr. Schmidt,
I just finished the third book of your Language Arts series. This is email is a big THANK YOU!!!
I LOVE your English series. My mom is getting mad at me because I am now constantly correcting everything that is in English - OK, I'm not correcting everything, but she says so ;)
I am fourteen and I am going to take college classes in the Fall. I had some worries about how I would do in the English part of the placement test. After completing Classes; I am feeling much more confident. You covered most of the areas I was having trouble with!
Thank you so much for writing the Language Arts series and the Math series! Fred really makes learning both subjects entertaining and easier.
I can't thank you enough for what your books and ministry have done in our lives. Life of Fred has so profoundly changed my daughter's view of math and now I just ordered your first language arts book with high hopes.
My husband, a Ph.D in Chemistry, who did seven levels of Calculus, was so skeptical of LOF but after seeing my daughter finally "get it" and actually have fun doing one (or several chapters) of math, he quickly changed his mind.
Anyway, the real reason for writing you was to say that I thank God for you every time I see your name and so appreciate the signed prayers book. I don't even know you but I know I will call you brother in heaven.
God bless you and your family, your ministry, your work and all your endeavors.
You have no idea how miraculous these books are to us! It's only the difference between hell and heaven.
I just wanted to write and say, "Thank You!" for the amazing Life of Fred series. My 13 year old daughter is in love with Fred, and so am I. We became acquainted with the sweet little guy two years ago, when my daughter was in 6th grade, and I decided to have her work through the Fractions and Decimals & Percents books along with her Horizons workbooks. She fell in love, zoomed through the books, and asked for the new Pre-Algebra with Biology book to do over the summer.
She was done with the Beginning Algebra book by early January, so next we had her work through the Pre-Algebra with Economics book. (She would really hate to miss any of the Fred story.) She took the ACT in February for the Duke TIP program. We were expecting her to do well on the Reading/English sections, since those are her strengths (and she did amazing), but we were absolutely SHOCKED by her math score. She received a 26 on the math section after doing algebra for less than one year! She said she was surprised by how many problems she knew how to do. I think it's because LOF teaches her to think, not just work problems. Just wanted to let you know that LOF absolutely is working for her, and we are going to continue with your wonderful series.
. . . You should have heard the shameless chortles of glee from daughter #1 when she came home from her hike. She dove right into the advanced algebra book, completely ignoring her hiking partner who surely thought my daughter had dealt a death blow to sanity. We, of course, shared freely with our guest how wonderful your books are, and their mom looked through the books and wrote down your web address.
We received the Trig book on Friday. . . . The book looks wonderful and my daughter has her old math excitement back. I believe this book (and series) is an answer to my prayers. . . .I found her at 7 am this morning, working problems with gusto! God bless.
Hello, Dr. Schmidt,
I was pleased that there was no extra shipping charge. . . . I was jaw-droppingly amazed at your fast shipping (ordered Thursday late, arrive Saturday.) Then I opened the book. Next cool surprise—how often do you get a math book signed by the author? Sweet!
Finally, I started reading. And grinning. And laughing. It was wonderful!!!! What a hoot—I knew my 12 year old son would love it. We had some friends over after church on Sunday and they took to reading passages out loud. Who knew math could be so entertaining? You have truly used your gifts in a way that will bless many people.
Dear Dr. Schmidt–
I had been struggling for months over what to use for my math geek, and this was just the ticket. I bought the whole set of six books, and everyone in the family—even the nonmath folks—dived into poor Fred's Adventures.
LOVE your calculus book! Far better than my old college calculus books!!! This will not only help me teach my son, but I have been wanting to teach other homeschooled high schoolers advanced algebra, geometry, trigonometry, and calculus. Once I have time to start my classes, I may be ordering lots of books for my students. I especially appreciate all the humor.
[Enclosed a photo of his 13-year-old son] "absorbing" algebra and Life of Fred.
My boys couldn't put it down. You are hysterical!
Life of Fred? The best thing I've ever read. No joke.
My friend . . . has been raving about your math books at church, and they have circulated among our homeschoool community like wildfire. This is mostly because her math-adverse daughter . . . after years of resisting traditional math instruction, ensconced herself in the living room easy chair and completed something like 25 lessons of one of the pre-algebra books in one weekend, Voluntarily!!!!
My engineering husband took a two minute look at the trig book and said "I like it, it's real math applied in real situations, let's get some." He's also delighted with the sense of humor throughout the books.
Dear Dr. Schmidt—
My 14-year old worked on the algebra book all the way home from Colorado. A very good sign!
I really appreciate your modest pricing and your desire to help people love math. Your prices are much better than other curriculum.
I work for the Department of the Navy. Your statistics book opens the possibility of teaching a stat course here for all of the officers who report for two to three year tours of duty as "test directors". . . . I was not ever one to read a math book but this stuff is fun and at age 62, I actually feel like I'm starting to really understand what I have been doing for the last 40 years.
Oh Yippee! now I can start at the beginning of math and finally get it through my thick head!! Can't wait.... This will be great for the grandkids to start with also. I'll be ordering a ton of books!!!
[a posting on a chat site] . . . was struggling with Saxon Algebra last year (she was doing Seton curriculum and so we had to use Saxon—which I personally don't like). I pulled out LoF Algebra—she whipped thru it and was able to catch up and finish Saxon no problem. Besides, the guy—Stanley Schmidt is a riot!
Hi Dr. Schmidt,
Dear Professor Schmidt,
On Saturday, my friend lent me a her copy of "Life of Fred: Fractions". That evening after supper, I started to read it and giggled so much my daughter came and sat beside me to see what I was reading. . . . We got a piece of paper and a pencil, and she wouldn't stop until we had read five lessons. . . . She said: "This is the funniest math book I have ever seen."
It was her bedtime, and I hid the book because I knew that if she found it she would read the story. . . .
Tonight, she asked to do some more. I kept saying "OK, that's enough for today; we can continue tomorrow," and she kept saying "Just one more page," and we're at p. 74 after two sessions. Incredible.
Dear Mr. Schmidt,
LOVE the books. can't believe they actually exist!!! you've ended my math search for high school and myself!!! thankyou thankyou thankyou
Both my daughter and I were thrilled when we began to read through the books. This is the FIRST TIME EVER I have seen true excitement from my daughter when it comes to math! She took the book into her new room and read the first several pages. I could hear her LAUGHING as she read. She begged to begin her new math the next day. The most amazing part is that we just began our "summer."
Thank you for making math affordable as well as interesting!
My 11 year old daughter just took a peak (read the first chapter) at her 13 year old brother's Beginning Algebra LOF and said to herself (but I heard her) "This is fun!" Thought you would enjoy that testimonial.
Dear Dr. Stan:
Dear Dr. Schmidt,
My 11 yo son just loves the Fred math. He'll see something in other books or just in daily life and say Fred... this.... or Fred... that.... He saw a random bicycle riding along the sidewalk, and then a random kid walking and he made up a D=RT problem right there in the car as to when the bicycle might catch up to the walker.
I am using Life of Fred: Beginning Algebra for my 7th grade GATE Seminar math class. No more groans, instead we have laughter.
[a Web site review]
All Hail, Fred and Stan!
I've borrowed her first few books to see exactly what makes this curriculum so great in her eyes. After working through the Fractions book, I'll have to say, it's the most unorthodox, unusual teaching material I have every seen!!!!
. . . From the time I was in 2nd grade, I cried my way through math. In high school, I wrote my best friend's term papers and she did all my algebra.
Now, here I am with your book; this thin funny little thing that's filled with obscure (and seemingly pointless & unrelated!) information. And yet, I've found myself sitting at the kitchen table, giggling over the story lines, working out problems and actually "getting it" for the first time in my life!!!! :)
And that's a very good thing since I am now a homeschool mother of 5. . . . I'm wondering where Fred's been all my life????!!!!! :)
. . . Just so you know, even my 7 and 9 year olds are BEGGING me to read the story of Fred to them!!!! Enough so that they're grabbing paper and pencils attempting to answer the questions with their siblings so I'll read more!!! I've never seen anything like it.
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