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# Struggling in Math...

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Please help. My 10 year old is struggling in Math. She is having a hard time with multiplying. We are doing long division now and she actually forgot how to carry when subtracting! She gets fractions and percents just fine but when it comes to muliplying she struggles and cries because she can't remember the facts. Any suggestions on how to help her.
by on Mar. 18, 2013 at 11:02 AM
Replies (11-20):
by on Mar. 18, 2013 at 12:21 PM

We use Christian Light Education (CLE), not because it is a Christian publisher, but because it is a great math curriculum. It has all the teaching in the student books, which makes it easy for both of us.

If it is just the facts holding her back and not concepts in general, I would just concentrate on getting them memorized. You aren't failing her. These things happen! Some kids just don't like to memorize (I was one of them and still am). Look for computer games, flash cards, or board games that encourage multiplying and/or dividing.

Quoting blueyedbaker:

We use Houghton Mifflin Math. She uses her fingers a lot or tally marks on paper.I know I have to find something different for her.
Quoting lucsch:

What do you use for math?

Our curriculum includes speed drills on all the facts that need to be memorized. It also continually reviews all concepts taught, which works well for my daughter (for some kids it doesn't). I think that has helped her the most. We haven't done flash cards much, and she seems to know her facts pretty well, though sometimes I catch her doing skip counting (also taught in the curriculum) and counting on her fingers (not taught and not encouraged by me, either) to help her "remember" them. That really shows up in the speed drills, so I catch her doing it. LOL

by on Mar. 18, 2013 at 12:52 PM

Math is not about memorizing or even carrying your numbers.  It is all about logic.  I suggest learning to play chess and do some logic puzzles.  I also recommend reading the life of Fred.  Look for ways to make connections with your everyday life and math.  Also remember people work on math in different ways as their brains develop.  She doesn't need to do math by a certain age.  When you are surrounded by numbers you will naturally think mathematically.  I would look for creative ways to work on Math.  Also encourage her to play with math and think through problems in her head.  I would just concentrate on trying different math games, logic puzzles, and looking for ways to apply math.  Keep working on practicing.  Make it pressure free and she will get it eventually.  I would give her a multiplication chart and tell her not to worry about knowing them by heart yet.  Just encourage her to keep practicing with the chart and she will learn them as works with them.  Good luck.  Remember kids learn best through play and games.

by on Mar. 18, 2013 at 1:18 PM
Thank you for the ideas. I guess I'm a little worried about the stuff that we aren't doing because we are spending so much time going over and over the multiplication. She has to take the state test in the Spring and I get worried she won't do well on that.
Quoting jen2150:

Math is not about memorizing or even carrying your numbers.  It is all about logic.  I suggest learning to play chess and do some logic puzzles.  I also recommend reading the life of Fred.  Look for ways to make connections with your everyday life and math.  Also remember people work on math in different ways as their brains develop.  She doesn't need to do math by a certain age.  When you are surrounded by numbers you will naturally think mathematically.  I would look for creative ways to work on Math.  Also encourage her to play with math and think through problems in her head.  I would just concentrate on trying different math games, logic puzzles, and looking for ways to apply math.  Keep working on practicing.  Make it pressure free and she will get it eventually.  I would give her a multiplication chart and tell her not to worry about knowing them by heart yet.  Just encourage her to keep practicing with the chart and she will learn them as works with them.  Good luck.  Remember kids learn best through play and games.

by on Mar. 18, 2013 at 1:28 PM

I just wanted to point out that she used to be very good, but has gotten progressively worse each year. To me, that points to curriculum that isn't  a match for her. I know it's late in the year to look for something else, but I would change for the fall. As hard as it is, pressure free is the way to go (as OP mentioned) because I made the mistake of really drilling the facts (timed, too, with all the pressure) with my DS and he totally shut down. It took a long time before he would not stress out over the facts. I would ask you DH to help, since he is so good at math, and also because I bet all she needs is to have a different light shed on it.  This is not your fault, it's just not the right approach for her.

Also keep in mind that in PS, they use one curriculum regardless of whether it fits the students or not. There is a TON of PS students not "getting" material. As long as the school district sees that she's making progress on it, they will be fine. Good luck!

by on Mar. 18, 2013 at 1:33 PM
Thank you. I need as many ideas on curriculum as I can get, to see what will work better for her.
Quoting gratefulgal:

I just wanted to point out that she used to be very good, but has gotten progressively worse each year. To me, that points to curriculum that isn't  a match for her. I know it's late in the year to look for something else, but I would change for the fall. As hard as it is, pressure free is the way to go (as OP mentioned) because I made the mistake of really drilling the facts (timed, too, with all the pressure) with my DS and he totally shut down. It took a long time before he would not stress out over the facts. I would ask you DH to help, since he is so good at math, and also because I bet all she needs is to have a different light shed on it.  This is not your fault, it's just not the right approach for her.

Also keep in mind that in PS, they use one curriculum regardless of whether it fits the students or not. There is a TON of PS students not "getting" material. As long as the school district sees that she's making progress on it, they will be fine. Good luck!

by on Mar. 18, 2013 at 2:48 PM
1 mom liked this

I would do a Math review everyday and then do your normal Math. They will eventually come to her quickly. I had to go back and do that with my oldest. She is in 6th grade and will forget basic Math facts if she doesn't use them in a week. Makes me bonkers.

by Sonja on Mar. 18, 2013 at 5:47 PM
1 mom liked this

@ blueyed >>> This is what I would suggest. Do some review everyday along with her regualar work.  Do the same thing with the rest of her work. Do a little review of something that you just covered and put in with the rest of her work. She will get it again. Sometimes, these things are just a phase. It is tough to have to go through something like this but at least there is a light at the end of the tunnel.  For you and for your daughter.  I had this happen with 3 of my kids. One of them took about 3 years before it finally clicked with them but now, it is like there was never a problem to beging with. Gah!  lol

Quoting mem82:

I would do a Math review everyday and then do your normal Math. They will eventually come to her quickly. I had to go back and do that with my oldest. She is in 6th grade and will forget basic Math facts if she doesn't use them in a week. Makes me bonkers.

@ mem >>  Good job.  :)

by on Mar. 18, 2013 at 6:28 PM
Here is a great math game that I just found. http://www.amazon.com/Think-Fun-1510-Math-Dice/dp/B0007LYKX0/ref=sr_1_5?ie=UTF8&qid=1363645556&sr=8-5&keywords=math+game Maybe focus on one fact throughout the day and keep quizzing each other. Have her quiz you. She will learn a lot by hearing you answer the problems.
Quoting blueyedbaker:

Thank you for the ideas. I guess I'm a little worried about the stuff that we aren't doing because we are spending so much time going over and over the multiplication. She has to take the state test in the Spring and I get worried she won't do well on that.
Quoting jen2150:

Math is not about memorizing or even carrying your numbers.  It is all about logic.  I suggest learning to play chess and do some logic puzzles.  I also recommend reading the life of Fred.  Look for ways to make connections with your everyday life and math.  Also remember people work on math in different ways as their brains develop.  She doesn't need to do math by a certain age.  When you are surrounded by numbers you will naturally think mathematically.  I would look for creative ways to work on Math.  Also encourage her to play with math and think through problems in her head.  I would just concentrate on trying different math games, logic puzzles, and looking for ways to apply math.  Keep working on practicing.  Make it pressure free and she will get it eventually.  I would give her a multiplication chart and tell her not to worry about knowing them by heart yet.  Just encourage her to keep practicing with the chart and she will learn them as works with them.  Good luck.  Remember kids learn best through play and games.

by on Mar. 18, 2013 at 11:54 PM

First bravo on paying such close attention.  Second, you will be able to help her through this.  Then she will breeze through something else.

We have two math products we love.  We started with Math u see, but found all of the repatative worksheets boring.  We do like the use of their colored blocks to help with math, though.  Also, they have a fun cd that has kids singing the multiplication facts.  My daughters love to sing  and dance to it.

We switched to the  Horizons Math.  Their workbooks are colorful and fun looking.  In one lesson you cover lots of different types of math (adding, sub., mult, measuring, a taste of algebra, geometry) thats just a sample of what we did this week.

My eldest struggled with adding while I told her to memorize it.  Once, I relaxed and changed our cirriculumn she loved math and chooses it first....also, she finally did get good at adding.

Good luck and you've got this!!

by on Mar. 19, 2013 at 9:42 AM
1 mom liked this
This makes me feel so much better that other people are goin through this and that it's not just me!! She does so well in all her other subjects. Writing could use a little work only because she finds it sooo boring and hates to add detail but she can be such a great writer when she puts her mind to it.
Quoting kirbymom:

@ blueyed >>> This is what I would suggest. Do some review everyday along with her regualar work.  Do the same thing with the rest of her work. Do a little review of something that you just covered and put in with the rest of her work. She will get it again. Sometimes, these things are just a phase. It is tough to have to go through something like this but at least there is a light at the end of the tunnel.  For you and for your daughter.  I had this happen with 3 of my kids. One of them took about 3 years before it finally clicked with them but now, it is like there was never a problem to beging with. Gah!  lol

Quoting mem82:

I would do a Math review everyday and then do your normal Math. They will eventually come to her quickly. I had to go back and do that with my oldest. She is in 6th grade and will forget basic Math facts if she doesn't use them in a week. Makes me bonkers.

@ mem >>  Good job.  :)