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Tips to get by in math class

by Sofia Khan, staff reporter

Students in Mrs. Keane's period two Algebra 2/Trig/Pre-calc class learn about fractional exponents.
Students in Mrs. Keane’s period two Algebra 2/Trig/Pre-calc class learn about fractional exponents.

A student is taking a math test that she’s been studying for all week. The topic is hard, and no matter how much she studies, she just doesn’t understand it. Come test day, she stares at the sheet, not knowing what to do. Anxiety builds up, and she comes out of the classroom in tears.

This is a situation that a lot students find themselves in.  For many, math is a very difficult subject to understand. Since they struggle with certains topics, they get so frustrated they just give up. Fractions, exponents, and order of operations some of the things that students have trouble with.

“When we start a new unit that I have never seen before, that’s a struggle,” seventh grader Mark Nardella said.

However, there are many ways of getting through a difficult math class. Even though many students don’t like to go for this extra help because of fear of feeling inadequate, in the end it’s worth it. This is because a student struggling in math class goes to a teacher or even a friend, in the end they will benefit from this help, getting a higher grade in the class.

One solution is going to after school tutoring sessions with teachers. Often teachers will allow students to schedule appointments with them for extra help. Sometimes, one on one teaching is easier to understand than learning in a class.

“It can help students by giving them one on one help from teachers or tutors that can illuminate the confusion or misunderstandings from class,” math teacher Mrs. Keane said. “When there are 30 students, it’s hard to catch everyone’s misunderstanding in 45 minutes.”

The school also offers Wednesday tutoring for all subjects, including math, that run once a month. The students who do the tutoring are in the Honor Society, making them qualified for this position. The dates for math tutoring are March 20th, April 24th, and May 22nd. This is from 1pm – 3pm, and they are free to leave whenever they are ready.

“ Wednesday tutoring is beneficial to students because if the students don’t understand what they’re learning in class, they can always ask the tutors because the tutors were exposed to that topic previously,“ sophomore Alice Mungyu said.

Ask questions. If a student is having trouble with a topic, that student should ask for help, instead of just sitting there in confusion. This will make things easier for them in the long wrong. And ask other peers for help too. Sometimes, they can explain it in a way a teacher can’t.

“I get by in math by asking for help during class if I don’t get something,” junior Luna Qu said. “If it’s confusing, I ask the teacher to clarify.”

Get help from outside sources. For some students, they don’t understand their teacher’s style of teaching. Hiring a tutor is a way of getting clarification with topics.

“It’s helped me acquire new skills,” junior Ravital Narkolayev said. “He makes it easier because he explains the problems step by step.”

These are just some ways to get through a difficult math class. Using these tips will help those who have trouble with this difficult subject. A student who goes to a tutoring session, compared to a student who doesn’t and struggles, will be better at this topic when it comes to the Regents, while the other student won’t, and fall farther behind.

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