Common Student Problems
Common Obstacles in Learning Math
After teaching for many years, I observe that most students always go through the same few phases of learning and face the same issues in their journey to excel in mathematics:
Issue 1: "I don't understand the concept (algebra, trigo etc)"
Issue 2: "I don't know how to apply the concept"
Issue 3: "I understood it a month ago. But I forgot how to do it now."
Issue 4: "I ran out of time during exam"
Issue 5: "I got so many careless!"
Issue 6+: "I... hate math, am confused, dont know what I am doing, am always tired, got distracted by classmates, am addicted to gaming, have a horrible teacher, am stupid etc."
For many students, they do not know how to overcome each of these barriers successfully. As a result, they keep falling further back while new barriers continue to form ahead of them as the school moves through the syllabus. Over time, some students become desperate, then de-moralized and eventually give up on learning math
My Value as a Math Tutor
As a tutor, my role is to help our students overcome these issues one by one as we journey down the syllabus:
1) I deconstruct complicated concepts down to bite-size information for my students to digest easily.
2) Students will be exposed to a large variety of questions to improve their concept application versatility.
3) Process of spaced repetition will be adopted to get students to review their past lessons periodically and reinforce their knowledge retention.
4) After mastering the fundamentals, focus would be shifted to speed in solving questions. Timed practice would be given more attention.
5) Finally, when a student has reach the stage of being overconfident (i.e. Lots of careless mistakes), they will be taught a most effective technique of consolidating their mistakes and learning from them. In addition, they will also be given tips on how to check their work independently and quickly.
6) To help students with other non-technical issues such as lack of motivation, lack of confidence, lack of focus etc. I guide them using my expertise as a coach.
My Value as a Coach
Apart from technical expertise, the other important value I offer my students is coaching. My role as a coach includes:
1) Motivate students to aim and achieve greater success.
2) Set clear, mutually agreed long-term goals with individual students and frequently review progress.
3) Promote the good values of hardwork, grit and discipline.
4) Listen to the problems that my students face and guide them to work out a solution.
5) Maintain high expectations and discipline from my students.
6) Encourage continuous improvements.
"Education is our passport to the future. For tomorrow belongs to the people who prepare for it today." - Malcolm X