Report cards are less than two months away, and the answer to the question is - YES YOU CAN. Two months is just enough time to get a significant boost in math class. Help your teen follow these 5 tried-and-true tips and see results by May!
1. They've got to show the teacher that they care.
I once got a "teacher mug" for Christmas. It said: "Teachers loving helping kids who love to learn". Cheesy, but true. Teachers want to help; your child simply needs to show that they're willing to put in the effort. The best way to do this is to tell the teacher directly that he/she wants to make a new effort and that they welcome support - that’s just music to a teacher’s ears.
When a teacher sees that you care, things only get better.
2. They've got to know their basics.
We've seen all types of students improve their grades after following a couple lessons on test taking. It's often the case that they know what they're doing but unfortunately just get lost in the test. The Guide helps fix that.
What’s 7 times 6? If the answer wasn't automatic, then you've got to know this: Knowing multiplications is essential in high school math, as is being familiar with algebra. Even problems in grade 12 consist of one difficult step, followed by a bunch of algebra. If your child doesn’t know them, practice! Make flash cards (or get a pack from Dollarama) or download an app, and practice, practice, practice.
3. They've got to ask for help quickly.
Once your child realizes that something is difficult, they should seek as much help as possible as quickly as possible. Teachers are very receptive to requests for extra help. Straighten out misunderstandings before they start to snowball.
4. They've got to do the work.
If your child wants to succeed in math, they have to do problems - problems are where one learns. Each error must be analyzed and understood, otherwise the whole exercise was a waste of time. A journal to keep track of errors can be useful in creating the memories that make up math.
5. Seriously, they've got to do the work (and you can help!).
Whether it’s measured in time or number of questions solved, help your child master the daily schedule and make work sessions regular. Setting aside a time and place for math work and practice is extremely effective. This is the most important advice I give my students’ parents - I saved it for last to make sure you remember it!
Implementing these steps this week is sure to improve your child’s grades - just give it a consistent effort for 2 weeks and you are guaranteed to see results.
About the author: Wassim is a teacher in Toronto, and when not teaching he enjoys reading, projects, Reddit, and learning.