Christine A Howard

Math Can Become Easier With No-Nonsense Algebra (Review)

Disclaimer:  I received a FREE copy of this product through the HOMESCHOOL REVIEW CREW in exchange for my honest review.  I was not required to write a positive review nor was I compensated in any other way. 

Do your children struggle with Algebra? I know this is something that has been a struggle for me, and it is now a struggle for my son. This is why we were excited to get the opportunity to review No-Nonsense Algebra from Math Essentials. Here is what we found…

A Little Bit About Math Essentials

Math Essentials was created by Rick Fisher, a math teacher with over 30 years of experience. With his teaching methods, many of his students were able to skip a level in math and move on to harder concepts much faster. He is a decorated teacher, with many awards for his innovative teaching methods. Math Essentials products incorporate those methods in a clear, concise manner.

No-nonsense Algebra book cover

Although this review will focus on the product we were given (No-Nonsense Algebra), they have other products to offer. During this Review Crew session, three products were reviewed. I highly recommend checking out all of the reviews. To do so, click the link near the end of this post.

The Products Reviewed In This Session Include The Following:

A Little Bit About No-Nonsense Algebra

No-Nonsense Algebra is just as it implies, a no-nonsense approach to teaching algebra. The book is a 294 page, sturdy soft-cover book, written in a workbook style. The pages are straight black-and-white with no graphics, keeping with the no-nonsense theme. Although there are no graphics, there are many computation examples.

Example page: Your child will need to show the work on scratch paper as there is no room to show work within the book. This does allow more than one child to use the book which is very nice for large families such as ours.

Each new concept begins with some text to read, and is f0llowed by practice equations relating to the text. If you are an auditory learner, the Math Essentials website has videos for your student. The book suggests that you need a passcode to access these videos. However, we were never asked to use one.

How We Used No-Nonsense Algebra

My son worked in the book for about an hour twice per week. It typically took him about an hour to get through one lesson. While this book is nice because it is concise, it would be nice to have further practice or explanation in some areas. Since math is not my forte, I was of little help to my son as he progressed through the lessons. There is no teacher’s section, and I felt like I was flying blind at times. However, I was able to use another resource from Math Essentials – Math Refresher for Adults to help me out some.

The videos are nice, and without them, my son would have been totally lost. He needed to watch someone working through the problems to fully understand the concepts. Each video is fairly short at around 10 minutes. We liked that, as my son did not become overwhelmed with information, and yet he had enough information to complete the exercises.

The videos are available via streaming only, so this could be an issue for families that do not have internet available. We don’t allow very much internet time in our house, so my son was given special permission to watch these videos. This worked well, especially because the videos are not too long.

We ended up using other resources for added practice. The book provides some practice. However, my son needs a lot more practice than the book provides. We would like to see additional practice. Maybe this could be available on the website for those that have purchased the book.

Our Thoughts…

Seth (age 14)

“What I like about No-Nonsense Algebra is that it is really easy to understand. The lessons were short and concise. This book helped me with my regular math program, and was a great supplement. Some students may need other resources along with this book if they use this as the main curriculum.”

working algebra problems

Chris (Mom)

“No-Nonsense Algebra is easy to follow and great for students that get distracted by graphics and images. I do have children that get lost in pictures. The plain pages help keep those with distractability issues focused. However, for visual learners that need color, this book may not work. As a parent who also struggles with math, I needed a bit more instruction to help my son. We cannot use this book independently, but love to have it for a secondary resource.”

Review Crew Thoughts…

You don’t have to take our word for it though. Other Review Crew families have also been working hard to bring you a great review. In fact, the families received varied products, so I highly recommend you check out all of the Review Crew Reviews.

Getting In Touch


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