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Godwit  (Level: 78.1 - Posts: 435)
Wed, 11th Feb '09 7:10 PM


I said I would tutor a young man, 18, who blew his entrance exams in the math section.
Any thoughts on basic math tutoring ideas for him? Sources, where to start?

I offered free help with college study skills, but it has morphed into math, at which I suck.

He says it's primarily math problem-solving he didn't
get...guess he means the train going 50 toward Cleveland at 200 mph, if a jackrabbit riding on the top
falls off, how far does it fall?

You see how much help I will be. Need smart people to advise.

What ideas/web site/text/skill set for getting him started? Thanks!!!!!

Caramel1  (Level: 126.0 - Posts: 21556)
Wed, 11th Feb '09 7:16 PM

Ask Barry. He knows everything!!! LOL Just kidding Linda

Chickfbref1  (Level: 120.7 - Posts: 2012)
Wed, 11th Feb '09 7:25 PM

Answer to your question is easy...the rabbit falls to it's death. X = death.

Some people, in my opinion, have a much harder time moving from the visual (word problems) into the math. I would first see if that is his problem, start small.


Godwit  (Level: 78.1 - Posts: 435)
Wed, 11th Feb '09 7:32 PM

Good idea. He did well on paragraph comprehension so his word skills are good.
Also..will track down Barry-who-knows. Thanks...helpful already.

Caramel1  (Level: 126.0 - Posts: 21556)
Wed, 11th Feb '09 7:38 PM

psstt Barry in is also Garrybl-chief word puzzle critic LOL -Linda

Garrybl  (Level: 275.9 - Posts: 6609)
Wed, 11th Feb '09 8:44 PM

Like Socrates I believe the first thing one needs to know is that one does not know. I know nothing about teaching anything --except bridge, and how to teach my grandmother to suck eggs.

Bigbird  (Level: 236.2 - Posts: 3300)
Wed, 11th Feb '09 9:02 PM

Godwit - I do a lot of tutoring. Not math, but the principles are the same. If he is trying to pass a specific exam, you need to get your hands on the review book for that particular exam. You need to analyze the types of questions that are asked - which concepts are tested the most, which are ignored. Then group the questions by category, if the book does not. Stick to one type of skill at a time. For example, if there are problems on percentages sprinkled throughout the test, you need to bring them together and spend a session just working on percentages. You need to give him assignments each time you see him, and he must do them.

Godwit  (Level: 78.1 - Posts: 435)
Wed, 11th Feb '09 11:03 PM

Barry would like my Mark Twain quotation--he says he was darn pleased to be able to provide the answer. "I said I do not know."

THANKS Bigbird that's the ticket.

Great ideas...start small, see if the problem is about comprehension, groups skills, cover him with rocks at the table and make him sit there until the math problems are done. Got it. Now at least I can sound like I have a clue. Essential, while I find someone who actually knows math to send him to. He's a really good kid...thanks for helping me help him.

Cujgie  (Level: 170.7 - Posts: 754)
Thu, 12th Feb '09 8:27 PM

Does he know his times tables and can spit out an answer in a split second? Times tables are vital for any math.

Bigbird  (Level: 236.2 - Posts: 3300)
Thu, 12th Feb '09 8:59 PM

No more - now they have calculators. They don't even have to be able to add anymore. Sad world.

Quackinator  (Level: 165.3 - Posts: 151)
Thu, 12th Feb '09 9:53 PM

There's always Math for Dummies.... seriously

My son took developmental math in college, he had a text that took him all the way back to the basics. Wish I could remember what it was called.

Mplaw51  (Level: 176.9 - Posts: 1582)
Thu, 12th Feb '09 11:18 PM

Bigbird's response was great! A study guide and a teacher's guide to the study guide would be very helpful also. Breaking it down was an excellent suggestion. Let us know when he passes the test!

Zeedee  (Level: 222.1 - Posts: 1088)
Fri, 13th Feb '09 9:03 AM

Any good book store (and perhaps your local library) have books on how to prepare for the SAT or ACT. There are sample tests -- and the answers and EXPLANATIONS of the answers in the back of the book. I taught myself a lot of math using those books. And check out and
Good luck!

Godwit  (Level: 78.1 - Posts: 435)
Sat, 14th Feb '09 2:40 AM

Way cool, thanks so much. I appreciate all this great advice.

Godwit  (Level: 78.1 - Posts: 435)
Sat, 14th Feb '09 2:40 AM

He canceled the first meeting, by the way.

Bigbird  (Level: 236.2 - Posts: 3300)
Sat, 14th Feb '09 5:44 AM

Tells you a lot, no?

Godwit  (Level: 78.1 - Posts: 435)
Sat, 14th Feb '09 6:15 AM

We'll see. He did phone before hand. He said work had called him in.
So let's wait and see.

But yes. I am pondering.

Sargon  (Level: 111.2 - Posts: 1256)
Sat, 14th Feb '09 7:11 AM

Look at

It was funded by the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation. He was co-founder of the Hewlett Packard corporation. It is a high quality site.

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