His ex-tutor threw his book onto the floor. Swoosh!
Imaging the book flying across your face. Right onto the floor.
James (not his real name) got it from his ex-tutor whenever he got his answer wrong.
Being a ‘F’ student, he had tons of his books thrown onto the floor.
Too many mistakes made. Some made due to fear.
His ex-tutor was a very strict teacher.
He couldn’t tolerate James making any mistake. Not even a wrong sign or unit (even the answer was right)
This was the story his mom shared with us over the phone.
Another math failure.
He didn’t just fail math.
He hated it.
Anyone who had gone through what he had would hate math. James even felt fear while learning it.
When mom first brought her to us, he was shivering.
Imagine it’s your child’s story. What will you do? How will you help him?
P6. 2 more months to PSLE.
Mom felt hopeless. We could sense desperation.
James was not alone. In fact, his story is not the worst.
(We had a mommy who always called his son “useless” every single day. Picture with me the daily toxins that was injected into the child’s self esteem.)
We have many kids like James who came to us for help over these years.
This is what we do to help the child.
* * *
#1 Math needs to be made fun (or a little bit less threatening) for James
James’ mom was asking how we could help him in math. But we knew he had a bigger issue.
Low self-esteem. Math phobia.
On the first lesson, we started to build rapport with him by playing board games together.
The intention was to make him feel comfortable with us first, then Math.
Soon later, we taught the whole class about having “never give up” attitude.
Instead of having more math papers to do, children like James need more tools for the mind, to strengthen it.
Most importantly, to drive away the negative thoughts and to raise his self-esteem and confidence.
During his Prelim paper (which was 2 weeks after), with his newly-found confidence and more smart techniques in tackling math problem sums, he braved the daunting questions.
He remembered what was taught by us during our short 2-hour lesson.
He recalled he must not left any question undone.
So he attempted all questions including the problem sums which he had always hated. Or afraid of.
Despite of the fear he was facing, he completed his paper. He told me his palms were all wet at the end of the paper.
On the day he got back his paper.
To his shock, he got a ‘B’. He was expecting another ‘F’ – again.
Not bad for 2 days of lessons with us. He was gleaming with joy when he shared the great news.
* * *
#2 Here are the Problem Sums Concepts. Do you know all 12?
This was exactly what we asked him.
He knew none.
Fine, at least we had an honest answer and we knew exactly where to start.
With only a month plus to PSLE, we put him through our 12-concepts-types math programme.
He was a hardworking boy. He did all our homework. Plus he got so motivated by us that he did more at home.
Mom was surprised that he even gave up his favorite TV show just to do math.
Likewise, your child must know all 12 by the time he sits for his PSLE this year.
How many does he know now?
Here are the 12 problem sums types.
1. Remainder concept
2. Equal concept
3. One unchanged
4. Same difference
5. Total unchanged
7. Guess and check
8. External unequal change
9. Working backwards
10. Number of units x value
11. Gap and difference
12. Repeated identity
How many do you know?
* * *
#3 K-C-N-S-U. Please follow this to solve ANY problem sum
The main reason some children didn’t manage to score well is because they didn’t have a proper proven process to solve their problem sums.
Most dive in and try to swim or sink, eventually.
Many children shared with us they were very anxious even just before the paper.
This is when the child’s mind goes into chaos and many forgot what they had studied earlier.
But, nothing beats ONLY remembering one thing before the exam.
Which is why we do this to help our children.
We taught them the 5-step simple KCNSU technique right from the start of the coaching programme.
This is so powerful that it can be used to solve any problem sum- Yes, ANY!
The even more powerful thing is they could even remember it after many months just because we taught them a simple way to remember it.
By following these 3 tips, it has also helped many other children to improve within a very short time.
One main factor is because children finally have found a more manageable way to learn and master problem sums.
When they discovered they can solve them easily, most start to want to do a bit more. Some even show enjoyment while doing it.
Because it is no longer scary.
No more books being thrown onto the floor because they get their answer wrong.