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When is it a good time to look for a tutor?  Some students wait until a big exam comes up, and do lots of cramming at the last minute.  While that strategy may work for some, others may need to take a different approach.    What if you need to take a mathematics or physics course and you know you will have difficulties?  Maybe the course is really advanced or it is not one of your best subjects.  The best approach would be to work with a tutor on a regular basis throughout the semester.  They can help you with any misunderstandings that may come up along the way, and help prevent you from falling behind in the course.  This also ensures that you get the individual attention that you may need.   

There are many situations in which a student or parent might want to seek extra help with math.  Does the student often need to retake assessments? As a teacher, I like to offer make-ups because I want my students to know it's more important to learn the material than to move on before they're ready. Needing to frequently retake assessments means that the student needs to reevaluate how they are preparing. Often, getting a tutor can help them figure out how to best study independently. Does the student freeze during assessments? Does their mind go blank? Or do they think they did well but it turns out that wasn't the case? It's possible the student has test anxiety and needs to build their confidence. Talking through the material with someone is one of the best ways to alleviate that anxiety. Does the student have a difficult time staying caught up with the material? Do they feel like they always get it after the test or quiz but not before? This... read more

One of the first things you notice in algebraic expressions (besides the sometimes haphazard mix of operations) are numbers that appear with a smaller number above them (like this 54). These smaller numbers are called exponents and, in this post, I'll give a basic rundown of what they represent and a few basic rules that you will need to follow when dealing with them.   So, you're probably thinking, what do exponents represent anyway. In short, it's a special way of writing a special form of multiplication. I know it sounds hard to grasp, so I'll give you an example:   - Let's look a 3*3. Of course we know it as 9, but in dealing with the order of operations writing a number multiplied by itself may be combersome if you already have several parentheses in the expression. so the way that 3*3 would be written is 32 as your multiplying 3 by a second 3.   But what if you want to represent 4*4*4 or need to multiply 10 5's? Simply count up... read more

In my experience both as a student & tutor in various math disciplines (especially algebra) I have encountered many students that struggle with the subject.  Some students have never been exposed to the material in over a decade; others avoid it like the plague & yet others struggle with test anxiety.  Based on what I have seen I have a few pieces of advice that warrant sharing.  Hopefully this will help the students that struggle with it as well as offer tutors some guidance on dealing with the most difficult learners.   (1) There is a definite emotional aspect in any subject that involves numbers.  Math brings out the emotions of frustration & fear (or some combination) in those that struggle with it.  The frustration comes from not being able to understand the concepts, while the fear results from failing a test or assignment.  In either case, these emotions drastically affect the student's thinking to such... read more

Hi Everyone! As the school year kicks into full swing, its important to monitor your child's progress. Some schools are great at doing this, and some... not so much. It is up to you as parents (or students!) to take control of your student's education and make sure they are at least on track, but hopefully excelling. That's all for now, take care!

I recommend Wolfram Alpha to all of my math and physics students, and to many others. It calls itself a Computational Knowledge Engine which doesn't do too good a job of describing itself but it is very useful as i'll explain below. It does quite a number of things that aren't comparable to other search engines. Wolfram Alpha First, one of its central components is based on Mathematica which is a mathematical programming language. Because of this it can solve problems in algebra, geometry, calculus, statistics, matrices and many other subjects. This is largely what I use it for; as in if I want to quickly solve or check a problem. If i can't remember exactly what the half angle integration of tangent is, or if a problem results in an answer to large for my calculator to display.   Second, it has large data sets available to it. These vary from current and historical weather data, i.e. what is the current temperature/chance of rain and what was the temperature... read more

I am excited to begin a brand new school year. There are always anxieties students face. There are tests. And projects. And the teacher who wears the purple pants three times per week.    But now we have ways to search for the best tutors. I cannot wait to see who will find me. I cannot wait to meet more students, help them study for tests, projects, and vent about their old-fashioned, purple-polyester-pants-wearing teachers who need to slow down the pace.   I want to help with all of that. I want my tenth year of tutoring to blow the red socks off the teachers with purple pants! Let's do this!   -Mrs. Becky

Don’t be stubborn: its The Monty Hall Problem. This is one of the least generally understood problems of all time. My hypothesis: the reason most people fail on The Monty Hall problem is that it isn’t straight, and it involves changing plans. If you don’t know, the way this works is that you are on a game show and must find a prize behind one of three doors. You pick a door and then The Game Show Host reveals that the prize is not behind one of the two remaining doors. With due intellect your supposed to reason that it is always advisable two switch your selection. What isn’t understood during the time the game show hosts open the door is that he will never open a door that has the prize in it. He will always open a null door. Vital information is encoded by the pact the game show host has with the producers and it moves in the transaction between the game show host and you. Think of it as the elements of America being encoded to the writing and voice of Stephen... read more

In math you learn new terminologies and many significant things pop up. Guys, do you ever dream about analytical calculus? No? Well, why not!   As a high school student you learned algebra and pre-calculus and those are great, but you can really figure that there is more to math than just that. I assume you were dazed and confused. That's okay. Perhaps though you enjoyed your subjects. That is pretty good.   There, you must try to learn analysis, because it is the most-funnest part of mathematics! Do you think I'm wrong? Well, begin with a subject like real analysis. During your study of analysis, you learn about continuity, metrics, and integration. I would like to know more about metrics.   The weird thing is that math is everywhere. Sorry, but I like math because of this fact.   It takes a real scholar to learn math. Got me wrong? Gals sometimes support the most advanced mathematical conclusions. You can make their notions... read more

If you are like me, you want to get a head start on things -- "hit the ground running," as they say. What better way than to get started on the new year in academics! I always found that when I was in high school or college, summer reading was very enjoyable. There were no deadlines -- I could nestle up by a tree and read for hours. I recommend giving it a shot.   When it comes to chemistry, what better way to get started than reading some basics. One of my favorites is Bill Bryson's A Short History of Nearly Everything. It is a great overview of science in general. I also recommend John Gribbin's In Search of Schrodinger's Cat. It is an amazing story about the discovery of quantum mechanics and is a must for all explorers of science.   It is also a good idea to get a chemistry set and do some basic chemistry experiments. It is a fun and interesting activity! A lot of chemistry experiments can even be done in one's own... read more

Hello Students!   Start this year off strong with good organizational and note taking skills. Make sure you understand the material and are not just taking notes aimlessly. Try to take in what your teacher is saying and don't be afraid to ask questions!! If you start taking the initiative to learn and understand now, college will be a much more pleasant experience for you. Trust me!   Stay organized and plan your homework and study schedule!   Quiz yourself!   Study with friends!   READ YOUR TEXTBOOK! :)    Remember, homework isn't busy work and a chance to copy down your notes, it is part of the learning process. This is especially important with math, as it builds on itself and understanding the basics will make the other subjects easier!   Have a fantastic and fun year!

Before starting a new math topic, you should always write down the steps that you need to solve the problem. Then start the topic and when you are doing the problem put those steps in front of you and you will never get that question wrong. After a while you will remember those step in your head and you don't need that paper any more. 

A very common question I hear from my MCAT students is that "How much math do I need to know ?" On Test Day,  no calculators allowed.  The following tips will help you all identify what math skills you’ll need.   MCAT Math: The ability to perform arithmetic calculations, including proportion, ratio, percentage, and estimation of square root. An understanding of fundamental topics in the following areas (at the level of second-year high school algebra coursework): exponentials and logarithms (natural and base ten); scientific notation; quadratic and simultaneous equations; graphic representations of data and functions including terminology (abscissa, ordinate), slope or rate of change, reciprocals, and various scales (arithmetic, semi-log, and log-log). The knowledge of the definitions of the basic trigonometric functions (sine, cosine, tangent); sin and cos values of of 0º, 90º, and 180º; the relationships between the lengths... read more

To many students math is a difficult time consuming process. In many developing countries they learn by rote and memorization. This inefficient teaching method leads to 12+ hour school days. The end result is a student who has less understanding and has learned that math is boring.   I see math as like solving a puzzle and playing detective. Math is how we used to entertain ourselves before video games and smart phones. Ultimately, math is the silent rhythm by which the universe dances. Math is a universal language that transcends historical, cultural and language barriers.

Today, the future depends on you as much as it does on me. The future also depends on educating the masses in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math, otherwise known as STEM. As a new tutor to WyzAnt, I hope to instill the importance of these subjects in student's lives, as well as, the lives around them.    Besides the fact that,  "the average U.S. salary is $43,460, compared with the average STEM salary of $77,880," (Careerbuilder) these subjects are interesting and applicable to topics well beyond the classroom. Success first starts with you; I am only there to help you succeed along the way. STEM are difficult subjects. Yet when you seek out help from a tutor, like myself, you have what it takes to master them.    Please enlighten me on students looking to achieve and succeed rather than live in the past and think I can't as opposed to I can. We can take the trip to the future together, one question at a time

In 2014, every child that I have taught has been familiar with using a SmartPhone, an IPad, a laptop, etc...  This is the age of technology, and for students to compete with their international peers, they will have to learn how to navigate the Internet and various functions of the new-age portable computer-like devices.     However, I have found that the increase in the use of technology has created two major learning deficiencies amongst our young people.   Firstly, I have noticed that many young people expect to get the "answer" instantly.  They often do not want to use the strategies that have been provided; not because they do not work, but because it takes them longer to "get to the answer".     For example, when teaching phonetics, I use a tap-it-out method for decoding and blending phonemes.  One of my students absolutely HATES to tap it out because he wants to say the word correctly instantly... read more

Normally, an equation has a single solution when it contains only one undefined variable.  For example, take the equation 3x + 7 = 19.   3x + 7 = 19     [original equation] 3x = 12     [subtracted 7 from both sides] x = 4     [divided both sides by 3]   This is one case of a larger trend in algebra.  As I've already said, you can solve an equation for one answer when it contains a single variable.  However, this is derived from the larger rule that you can solve a set of equations where there are as many distinct equations as there are variables.  These are called simultaneous equations, and occur any time that two equations are both true over a certain domain.  In the more practical sense, this is what you should do if an exam asks you to solve for a value and gives you two different equations to use.   To solve simultaneous equations, we can use three strategies... read more

Hi,   My name is Jen and I am a math nerd.   I love math and I honestly believe that you have the capability to love it, too. We use basic mathematics in our everyday lives - even if you don't think about it that way. I use algebra skills when I am shopping sales at my favorite stores and I use geometry when I play mini golf with my brothers. Math is all around us and I would really like to help you see that being a great math student has many advantages inside and outside of the classroom.   I hated math until I got an amazing teacher in fifth grade, and even if it's the summer before seventh grade or senior year you have the chance to be a great math student, too!    I know this whole post is a little cheesy and really optimistic, but I know that with a little help and perseverance I can get you through that PreAlgebra math packet or that Calculus final you have been dreading all semester.    Please post... read more

Having fun in the summer is what this break is all about! However, if you are not diligent in retaining what you've already learned it'll "POOF"! A tip from what I did in summer! Have your fun, but take one hour a day to review your old notes, then search for a problem on the internet and try and solve it!

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