Why do high school students struggle in math?
Whenever we ask our Vancouver high school students ‘what is the most difficult school subject?”, the majority answer “math”. So why is high school math so difficult?
One of the main reasons math becomes so difficult in high school is that being good in math requires practice, persistence, and patience. Students need to understand the math concepts rather than to memorize the steps – and in order for the brain to grasp a concept, it needs to practice, practice, practice. In high school, students’ workload increases for every subject, including math. All of a sudden, in order to get the same mark they did in middle school, they need to work harder. Also, since many students get involved in extracurricular or volunteer activities through out their high school years, they are left with even less time for studying.
An important point to consider is that math is a cumulative subject, which means you have to gain understanding of the primary school basics before you can learn the more advanced, high school topics. If a student was getting a C in middle school, this means he/she wasn’t understanding almost half of the material taught in class. Since the students doesn’t have a strong foundation, understanding of the harder, more advanced topics become increasingly challenging.
What can parents do to help their kids?
In high school classroom sizes increase and teachers don’t have the time nor the energy to ensure that every single student understands every concept. Once parents detect math problems with their child, they must act quickly to get them up to speed, before they fall ever farther behind.
The first thing is to make sure your child isn’t drowning in extracurricular activities. It’s important to be involved in activities outside of school, but grades should be set as priority if you really want your child to improve.
Secondly, speak with your child’s teacher to discuss and brainstorm ideas about what the problem may be. Is it that your child is struggling emotionally at school with bullying, peer pressure, etc? Is the home environment not conducive to productive studying? Or does he/she just needs some extra help in understanding the material more clearly?
Hire a GOOD tutor, not just a tutor. Even if a good tutor is more expensive, you will end up saving money as your child won’t need as much time to see results. A good tutor will also be able to help your child with learning skills and monitor your child’s study habits.
MyGradeBooster offers in home tutoring services to high school students (grades 8, 9, 10, 11, and 12) in Vancouver, North Vancouver, and West Vancouver. Our tutors specialize in math, science, chemistry, physics, and biology tutoring.