Early Signs That Your Child is Struggling in Math

School bells are now ringing, and chatter of children once again fills those locker-lined hallways. Before you know it, report cards will be out. A bad mark may indicate your student could benefit from a tutor, but why wait until your child is behind? Signs that he or she may be struggling in school include:

  • A negative attitude in a particular subject
  • Calling his or herself "stupid"
  • Behavioral outbursts with regard to studying / school work
  • Struggling in a subject that he or she previously did not
  • Expressions of wanting to give up
  • Lack of motivation or loss of interest

Through personalized, private tutoring, Hire Learning offers an effective and seamless learning opportunity across a broad range of mathematical and statistical subjects—including advanced placement (AP) courses—for students in elementary school, middle school, high school, college and graduate school.

Contact us today to learn how we can help your child understand math concepts and improve classroom performance.

We serve the Indianapolis metropolitan community, including Avon, Carmel, Castleton, Eagle Creek, Fishers, Geist, Greenwood, Lebanon, Meridian-Kessler, Noblesville, Nora, Westfield, Whitestown and Zionsville.

Preparation Equals Performance

October means more than Friday night football games and the homecoming dance to most high school seniors — for many, it’s also SAT time. Students planning to take the SAT in October should be preparing now by:

  1. Understanding the types of math questions tested on the SAT;
  2. Reviewing math concepts already learned; and
  3. Taking practice SAT math tests and learning from any missed questions / incorrect answers.

The SAT math test focuses on three principal areas of arithmetic that students will be exposed to in college math, science and social science courses, and rely on in their future career and everyday life: Algebra (linear equations and systems), Problem Solving and Data Analysis (numerical and graphical data), and Advanced Math (complex equations). Additional topics include geometry and trigonometry.

The SAT math test consists of two 25-minute sections and one 20-minute section. Most math questions are multiple choice but some require students to arrive at and write in the answer. One portion of the test allows for the use of a calculator while the other portion does not. Students can review sample SAT math questions through the following two links: calculator permitted / calculator not permitted

Empower your student to earn her greatest potential score with the expert guidance of Hire Learning. Schedule an SAT-focused session today so that she is prepared to perform come October.

Summer 'Brain Drain'

A study performed by the University of Missouri indicates that students, on average, lose 2.6 months of grade-level math equivalency during summer break. This can make for a challenging first few weeks of school, where teachers find themselves needing to review mathematical concepts taught the previous year.

You can support your child’s classroom learning by implementing summertime math activities that are both amusing and educational. The following three ideas top Hire Learning’s list for younger students, where work is disguised as fun!

  1. Road Arithmetic: Whether you’re hitting the highway for a family vacation or simply driving 15 minutes to the grocery store, challenge your child to add up the numbers on license plates of passing cars (“C50 36K” = 14). Once she's comfortable playing, throw in a twist by assigning a value (example: 3) to all letters found on the plate (“C50 36K” = 20).
  2. Food Fun: Intertwine math concepts into family meal preparation. Before slicing into a pineapple, ask your child to determine how many pieces you should cut if each family member wants four pieces. Or have a build-your-own pizza night, encouraging your child to place twice as many pepperoni on his pie than he did mushrooms. How many would that be? Or bake muffins with the help of your little chef, where he’ll participate and actively learn about common measurements such as a cup, teaspoon and ounces.
  3. Change Up: Grab a handful of coins and invite your child to “pay” for common household items. Present her with a lollipop, tell her it costs $0.60, and challenge her to find five different ways to “buy” it using any combination of coins. Or ask her to “pay” for a $1.32 apple with the least amount of coins possible. Continue to choose new items. Put a spin on the game by introducing paper bills as an option for payment.

Want to give your child an even greater boost this summer? Contact Hire Learning today, where we’ll customize a tutoring plan that will sharpen his skills and prepare him for next year’s curriculum.

The Three Hats

I love the puzzle below because it doesn’t seem like there’s enough there to answer it. The secret lies in imagining yourself in the head of each princess as they imagine themselves in the head of their sisters. It requires a fantastic leap of imagination. I’m not going to solve it for you, but consider:

  1. What does the eldest sister know about her sisters’ hats?
  2. What does the middle sister know from the fact that the eldest sister doesn’t know her own hat?
  3. What does it tell us that even with this information she doesn’t know the color of her own hat?

Three princesses are taken prisoner by an ogre. For sport, the ogre puts them in a row from eldest to youngest, so that each sister can only see her younger sisters. Then he blindfolds them and says, “I have three white hats and two black hats. I will put one hat on each of your head. If any one of you can tell me the color of your own hat when I take off your blindfold, I’ll let all three of you go.”

The ogre takes the blindfold off the eldest princess. She looks ahead at the hats on her two younger sisters, thinks, and finally says, “I don’t know what color my hat is.”

The ogre takes the blindfold off the middle princess. She looks ahead at the hat on her younger sister, thinks, and says, “I don’t know what color my hat is.”

Then the ogre takes the blindfold off the youngest princess. She looks ahead into the woods–she can’t see anyone else’s hat. Then she thinks, and says, “I know what color my hat is.”

What color is her hat and how did she know?