News from Mathnasium of Gainesville
4 Tips to Boost Your Child’s Confidence in Math Class
Dec 15, 2020
Is your son or daughter crying over math homework, avoiding homework, or acting moody after their online learning sessions? These are signs that your child is intimidated or frustrated by math - usually because they aren’t getting the guidance they need.
With the right mindset and a little assistance, you can empower your child to face these challenges. These four tips will help you make math enjoyable for them!
1. Evaluate their learning environment
The first step in building your child’s math confidence is making sure that they’re set up for success. Your child’s teacher is their first source of information and assistance, so it’s a good idea to make sure they’re focused during the initial lesson. Ask your child’s teacher if they’re having any problems in class, or observe your child as they participate in online lessons at home. If paying attention to lessons is a problem, you may need to start by dealing with the stress and excess energy caused by the many recent changes to your child’s lifestyle. You can also determine whether there are too many distractions around their desk or on their computer, and adjust accordingly.
2. Understand which topics challenge them
After taking environmental factors into account and doing your best to counteract them, it’s good to get an understanding of what math topics your child is learning about, and which ones are causing them to struggle. At Mathnasium, we begin our tutoring program with an assessment to determine your child’s strengths and weaknesses. The results of this assessment are the key to a successful experience at Mathnasium, but they can also be used to shape how you help your child at home.
Knowing your child’s trouble spots will help you recognize when to slow down and make sure they’re absorbing the information, leading to less frustration for both of you. You can help out by providing reminders or hints that may lead them to the correct answer, having them take more of a leading role as you work through more problems. If your child is displaying signs of frustration, make sure to take a break and come back to the assignment when they have calmed down.
3. Celebrate the wins - and the process that got you there
The quickest confidence-booster for your child is positive reinforcement from you. While you’re working through math assignments, encourage them when they remember the correct process and celebrate even the small victories. This is more effective than using negative comments, or punishing them when they’re struggling. When you see the payoff from working with your child - make sure to let them know how happy you are with them. Congratulate them on putting in the effort it takes to improve, telling them that smarts are something that can be achieved with hard work, rather than an inherent ability.
4. Make sure they know they have a support network behind them
You’re willing to do what it takes to make sure your child succeeds, and you’re not the only one! Your child’s teacher and the tutors at Mathnasium are all on the same team. With your positive reinforcement and patience tutoring at home, your child should be feeling more at ease already, but make sure that they feel comfortable asking questions as well. If your child is struggling with a problem, you can prompt them to let you know what’s giving them a hard time. After helping them out, explain to them that they can always ask you, their teacher, or their tutor when something is stumping them.
Helping your child approach their math assignments with confidence is no small feat - it takes patience, understanding, and a few allies. With these tips in mind and an expert tutor by your side, we’re confident that your child can learn to enjoy math. At Mathnasium, we are here to help either in person by appointment, or online with Mathnasium @home.
Alachua County has lifted the mask mandate. Students, parents, and staff have the option of wearing a mask inside the center.
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