"When you evaluate an integral, what do you evaluate first, the upper or lower part?") To check for understanding have the student re-explain the procedure to you. Avoid asking questions like, "Does that make sense to you?" and "Do you under5stand now?" Disengage!Encourage the student to work the next problem on his/her own, but let him/her know you will check back.
S/he needs to develop the ability to apply what s/he is learning without your supervision. A math tutor should guide a student through the solution process. Ask the student leading questions that will direct the student towards the correct steps. Avoid doing problems for the student. If the student cannot get the correct answer and asks for help, the tutor should look at what the student has done and try to locate the error.
Tutoring goal should be to help students become an independent learner. In mathematics, it is important to teach concepts rather than just processes or procedures. For example, the tutor should explain why it is important to follow the "order of operations" rule, PEMDAS, rather than just showing the student how to do it.
Some students believe getting help from a tutor is a substitute for attending class. Students having difficulty in math must realize time spent with a tutor is additional to classroom time. Tutors will deal with students with varying degrees of math anxiety. Tutors should avoid using phrases such as, "this is easy." Such phrases intimidate the student.
Sometimes it is helpful to learn about the student's math background. If the tutor believes the student is enrolled in a course the tutee is not ready for, talk to the instructor. If the tutor is unsure of a mathematical procedure or concept, check with a math instructor. It is helpful to find out what approach the text or instructor is using on a particular problem.
Tutors are strongly encouraged to stay in touch with instructors of the students they work with. Many people believe mathematics and sciences can be conquered only by certain kinds of people. This myth destroys potential, provides excuses and limits our possibilities. What is required is persistence and patience. Learning Math and Science takes time and effort, but it is worth the investment! Five suggestions for overcoming math/science anxiety include: Do not confine yourself to exact answers or processes.
Sometimes it is easier to work from an answer to a problem/question than vice-versa. Do not use self-defeating talk. Use constructive self-talk when referring to your abilities in mathematics and science. Do not run away from your intuition since it could lead you towards a possible solution and understanding of the concept and application.
Do not run away from math/science frustrations. Try to keep a journal where you jot down strengths, triumphs, areas to further address, and emotions about areas of study.
If you’re struggling with math, know that you aren’t alone. Despite this knowledge of shared anguish, for students experiencing difficulty, a math test can be the most daunting thing in the world. Math is difficult for many students, and often, they seek the help of a tutor. Finding a good tutor can also feel difficult, but if you know what you’re looking for, it can be an experience well worth the time.
This means more than just during the time when you’re together – you’ll need to be in touch at other times, too. Make sure that you find someone who is quick to respond to emails, phone calls, or texts (as long as your expectations are reasonable). If you can find a tutor that understands your learning style and is able to communicate the material, you’ve likely found a keeper.
Math can be difficult to learn. Sometimes, it takes more than one (or two or three) times to get an idea firmly cemented in your brain. If your tutor grows frustrated, you will also be frustrated with the entire process. Find a tutor who is willing to explain a concept multiple ways to help you fully understand it.
While it can be difficult to find someone that has both the math knowledge and the teaching talent, the search may be worth the end result. Often, the best tutors and students are those who are passionate about a subject. Look for a tutor that loves everything about math. Chances are, he or she will be excited to explain everything to you because he or she truly loves and enjoys the subject.
Finally, look for a tutor who is asking the right questions. While you may enjoy the idea of someone who does the work for you, it is important that you learn to do it yourself. Find a tutor that provides encouragement along the way, but ultimately requires you to answer the question.