High school math proves challenging even to previously strong math students. This may cause a shock to those not accustomed to struggling academically. The introduction to academic challenges can even lead solid students to reject certain subjects, even if mastery only requires study habit adjustments.
High School Math Requires Different Thinking
High school math, unlike basic arithmetic previously covered, may not follow familiar patterns. In fact, when students enter subjects such as algebra and geometry, the challenges become more conceptual instead of structural. This often throws off students with a high level of previous mastery, because it doesn’t concern skills but principles and theorems.
Many students also struggle as subjects require them to transfer number understanding to real-world aspects. Gone is the computational understanding of previous word problems. Advanced subjects often require connections and simultaneous introductions to additional subjects, such as physics.
So how can students overcome these struggles? Often, it requires a deeper explanation than the limited classroom instruction allows. Without the deeper understanding of why math makes sense, students find themselves following behind on their computation skills as well. At this point, they find previous crutches, such as simple memorization proves useless. This only adds to their frustration.
If your student struggles with high school math – whether they were previously good math students or not – it may be time for additional instruction and time specifically devoted to this new relationship with numbers. This investment not only builds individual skills and possibly raises grades, but also builds confidence and breaks down resentments toward new subject areas. The time to help students in these areas is as soon as signs of frustration begin to emerge. Contact Lumen Learning to help your student take this new leap into what and how they learn.