Rebecca Zook - Math Tutoring Online

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Meet me in person in Ithaca-Cortland, NY, Saturday, April 9th, 2016!

Saturday, April 2nd, 2016

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Yes, this is what math can look like!

Are you (or is your daughter) freaking out, failing, or secretly crying yourself to sleep about math?
Is math becoming a major source of stress in your family?

Do you wish that math could be something you actually enjoyed TOGETHER (as a family)?

Or maybe you (or your child) are (is) confident with math, but you’re already worried about what will happen when the material gets harder?

Next Saturday, April 9th, 2016, I’ll be speaking at a very special conference, Tech Savvy Ithaca-Cortland in NY, which is one of the only conferences in the world with programming for both 6-9th grade girls AND their parents.

Join me for a special session for parents on How to Raise a Math-Confident Daughter (2-2.50 pm for parents)
and
for girls, a Math Mastery Mastermind Workshop (one at 11 am, one at 12 noon)!

In these workshops, you will:
-discover how to support your daughter to achieve true mastery, rise to the top of their class, and even come to experience math as a source of joy and a type of self-expression.
-walk away with clear steps, case studies, and tools that you can use immediately to ensure math confidence and success.

And your daughter will:
-be nurtured in her creative, higher-level problem-solving abilities
-be encouraged to experiment in a completely supportive environment
-grow her courage and confidence as she discovers how much she can both learn from and help other girls!

Date: Saturday, April 9, 2016
Time: 8.30 am – 4.30 pm (I won’t be speaking the entire day, but my presentations are part of the day-long event)
Location: Tompkins-Cortland Community College
170 North Street
Dryden, NY 13053
Cost: $5 per person (adult or student)

Click on the link to register in advance: click here

This event will provide powerful support not only for your child but also for you as the parent, so it’s highly recommended that parents also attend!

I would love to see you there!

Sending you love,
REBECCA

Five Steps to True Mastery

Friday, April 1st, 2016

Have you ever taken a math test you felt completely confident about, only to find out that you bombed it and you weren’t prepared at all?

Trust me, you’re not alone. But why does this happen so frequently?

I’ve been thinking about this a lot lately. And this is what I’ve realized.

True mastery takes more than one step. But I’ve never seen these steps discussed before like this.

And I definitely didn’t hear about this when I was in math classes growing up!

This is what I had to figure out all by myself, and now do in all of my one-on-one work with my own clients.

Let me break it down for you:

1. The first level of mastery: you can follow along passively when someone else is explaining a concept to you or demonstrating how to do a technique.

You aren’t actively participating, you’re just observing and listening, and what they’re saying makes sense.

2. The second level of mastery: you can do problems interactively with someone else.

You are actively participating as they walk you through the steps of the problem and you do it together.

3. The third level of mastery: you successfully complete a similar problem type completely independently and get the answer correct – and you understand why – without any guidance or corrections from someone else.

4. The fourth level of mastery:
you consistently get the answer right on enough similar problems that the concepts get internalized and the process becomes automated.

You have the track record that shows you that you really are prepared to go in and do this successfully on a quiz, test, or exam.

5. BONUS: The fifth level of mastery: you understand the concept and technique so well that you can easily and confidently teach someone else how to do it. When you get to this level, you know that you’ve REALLY got it!

Until you get to the point where you have at least “level four mastery” and consistently get the answer correct on problems of a similar type (and understand why), you aren’t really prepared.

For example, a student will passively understand someone else’s demonstration and think, “Great! I got it! I am ready to rock this test!” However, that is only level 1 mastery. Just because you can follow along with someone’s demonstration of how to bake muffins from scratch doesn’t mean your own muffins will taste good. Watching someone else do it is ONLY the first step.

Another place where major problems can happen is when students think, “Great! I did two of these problem types correctly and I understand them. I am ready to get an A!” That is like getting the basketball in the net twice and thinking that you’re ready to win the next game. It takes consistent training and practice to get consistent results.

Do you wish you knew exactly to do to get consistently awesome results in math? Are you tired of doing everything you know to help your daughter or son prepare for math tests, only to experience soul-crushing defeat time after time? Are you ready to invest in high-level, one-on-one, super-customized support that is not typical tutoring? Then send me an email at rebecca@zooktutoring.com, or give me a call at 617-888-0160, and we can set up a special private appointment for a complimentary one-on-one conversation where we can explore whether or not the way I work would be a good fit for you! I can’t wait to connect!

Related posts:
On Optimal Challenge
Need to remember something important? Breaking news!
“It’s eraser time!” (And other math mantras)
“Interesting,” not “Complicated” (Math Mantras Part 2)

Case study: a 10th grader goes from feeling like math is a foreign language to being the most-called upon student in her class

Wednesday, March 30th, 2016

When this student first came to me just before the summer between her freshman and sophomore years, her mom told me that the tutor they’d just worked with had told the family that to this student, math was like a foreign language where she only spoke five words.

Somehow she’d made it to the end of 9th grade with Bs in math, but none of it actually made any sense to her. It was like she just knew enough to “get around” – like how to ask where the bathroom was and order a hamburger – but not enough to really understand what was going on around her, or communicate herself.

Once we started working together the summer before she headed into pre-calculus, this student’s mastery, confidence, and grades began to steadily improve. By mid-sophomore year, my student’s teacher mentioned to her that he had to be careful to call on other students because my student always gave the correct answer!

The “piece de resistance” was when my student had to take an oral final for her math class at the end of her 10th grade year. Her teacher gave them five very sophisticated problems that synthesized everything they’d ever learned in new ways they hadn’t seen before. They had unlimited time to prepare, and then each student was asked to explain one of the five problems, picked at random on the spot, in front of the entire class. My student did such a good job that she got an A, and she told me later that she walked out of that class feeling like, “I can do anything!”

When it came time for this student to decide what math class to take after pre-calculus, instead of taking the statistics class that many students take as a way to avoid math, my student opted to enroll in AP AB Calculus. Because math had become beautiful, fascinated, and intrinsically rewarding to her, she wanted to keep exploring and growing.

Here’s how this student and I worked together to completely transform her experience of math from a source of unbelievable stress and anxiety into a source of joy and strength:

1. We worked in an atmosphere of total camaraderie and trust. Our tutoring sessions were totally a lighthearted, safe zone where there was absolutely no judgement. This student was free to ask as many questions as she wanted, go over as many examples as she desired, or go over the same example as many times as she required, without any fear of being embarrassed.

2. We focused on filling in the gaps, while also addressing whatever she needed to learn that week or that day. When we would go over her current material and encounter a gap, we’d keep excavating backwards through the layers of prerequisite knowledge until we found the original misunderstanding. Then we’d fill that in, then the idea on top of that, then the idea on top of that, until we’d build back up through the layers to what she was responsible for learning today. This way she was able to repair gaps in her foundational knowledge, while also staying on top of her weekly curriculum and being prepared for tests and quizzes.

3. We really focused on approaching the material in a way that worked for HER. This particular student craves conceptual understanding, so we would approach the material from different angles until she understood WHY it worked that way. She also loves learning math visually, so we would frequently approach concepts and procedures in a visual way – like FOILing using a box instead of just parentheses – that made the concepts more intuitive for her, and easier to internalize.

During moments like this, she would share observations like, “I don’t know how I lived through math without completely understanding this, because it’s so much easier than I thought it was. My whole childhood with math has been completely relearned.”

As my student’s mastery naturally led to greater confidence and grades, her enthusiasm for math grew more and more. She recently shared with me, “This is actually so cool – when actually I understand it, it’s so much fun!”

Would you like your daughter or son to go from feeling like math is a foreign language to experiencing math as genuinely enjoyable, meaningful, and fascinating? Send me an email at rebecca@zooktutoring.com, and we can set up a special complimentary 90-minute interview to explore whether or not it would be a fit for us to work together. I can’t wait to connect!

Related posts:
Case study: a 5th grader goes from believing “math doesn’t like me” to singing and dancing about math while wearing a purple tutu
Case study: a rising 8th grader masters her summer math packet
How to multiply binomials using a box (alternative to FOILing)
An easy way to remember how logarithmic notation works

Engagement x Excellence, March 22 at the Science Museum of Virginia, Richmond, VA!

Thursday, March 3rd, 2016

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Do you find yourself wondering…how can I truly engage my students with math?

Or even just…why is there such great insecurity right now about US students mastering math?

Or questioning…how can I help my students excel and succeed in math in ways that are deeply meaningful to them?

On Tuesday, March 22nd, 2016, I’ll be speaking at a very special professional development conference for teachers, administrators, and those involved in the mathematical lives of middle and high school students.

It’s called the  “E^2 (Engagement x Excellence) Symposium:
The STEAM Solution: Strategies and Research to Ignite Student Engagement and Success in Math” 

Join me for my special session on How to End the Math Drama – Secrets of the Math Mastery Mindset (for educators)!

In my workshop, you will discover groundbreaking tools to build and nurture your students’ math confidence, including:

-growth mindset

-flow orientation

-mastery orientation, and more 

so you can support your students to:

-shift the paradigm

-achieve true mastery 

-rise to the top of their class

-and even come to experience math as a source of joy and a type of self-expression. 

You will walk away with clear steps, case studies, and tools that you can immediately use to nurture a mastery approach and Mastery Mindset in your own classroom, school, or community. 

Date: Tuesday, March 22, 2016 
Time: 8:30 – 3:00 pm (I won’t be speaking the entire day, but my presentation is part of the day-long event)
Location: The Science Museum of Virginia, 2500 West Broad Street, Richmond 
Cost: $50/participant • Limited seats available 
Click here to register in advance: https://vasteam.org/professional-development/engagement-excellence/

This event will provide powerful support not only for teachers but also administrators, so it’s highly recommended that both attend!  (So bring your principal, head of school, and colleagues!)

I would love to see you there!
Sending you love,
REBECCA

Meet me in person at Trinity College, CT – Saturday, 2/27!

Friday, February 19th, 2016

15.10.24STEMDuyTran (506)

Are you (or is your daughter) freaking out, failing, or secretly crying yourself to sleep about math?

Is math becoming a major source of stress in your family?

Do you wish that math could be something you actually enjoyed TOGETHER (as a family)?

Or maybe you (or your child) are (is) confident with math, but you’re already worried about what will happen when the material gets harder?

Next Saturday, February 27th, 2016, I’ll be speaking at a very special conference, Tech Savvy at Trinity College in Hartford, CT, which is one of the only conferences in the world with programming for both 6-9th grade girls AND their parents.

Join me for a special session for parents on How to Raise a Math-Confident Daughter (10-10:45 am for parents)
and
two sessions for girls – one on How to Be Math-Confident, and another immersive Math Mastery Mastermind Workshop!

In these workshops, you will:
-discover how to support your daughter to achieve true mastery, rise to the top of their class, and even come to experience math as a source of joy and a type of self-expression.
-walk away with clear steps, case studies, and tools that you can use immediately to ensure math confidence and success.

And your daughter will:
-be nurtured in her creative, higher-level problem-solving abilities
-be encouraged to experiment in a completely supportive environment
-grow her courage and confidence as she discovers how much she can both learn from and help other girls!

Date: Sunday, February 27th, 2016
Time: 8.30 am – 4.30 pm (I won’t be speaking the entire day, but my presentations are part of the day-long event)
Location: Trinity College, Mather Hall, 300 Summit Street, Hartford
Cost: $5 per person (adult or student)

Click here to register!

This event will provide powerful support not only for your child but also for you as the parent, so it’s highly recommended that parents also attend!

I would love to see you there!

Sending you love,
REBECCA

15.10.24STEMDuyTran (495)

And yes – everyone will receive their own sparkly purple butterfly 🙂

Do you wish your kid could feel like Albert Einstein?

Thursday, February 18th, 2016

My student who loves to sing and dance about math boldly announced to me during our tutoring session, “I feel like Albert Einstein!”

Ok, so let’s back up for a second. How did this happen?

When she told me she felt like Albert Einstein, I told her, “I think this is really important. Let’s look at this together for a minute.”

What was the process that led to this lightbulb moment?

Here’s the breakdown.

We were working on a problem that combined multiple circles shapes to make a complicated-looking shape that LOOKED super scary and weird – but was actually just a bunch of circles combined in an innovative way.

When my student first saw the problem, her first thought was, “I don’t want to do this. This is too complicated.” (Initial resistance to the problem.)

Then, she thought, “OK, why don’t we just try it, because if we skip it, I might forget to do it and then I won’t ever get it done or learn from it.” (Willingness to engage with the problem.)

As I was talking to her about the problem, this student started playing around with the diagram, trying to break it into smaller shapes.

Without freaking out or trying to force anything, she just playfully engaged with the problem, without being worried that she “didn’t know how to do it.” (Willingly engaging with the unknown with a sense of playfulness and lightheartedness.)

While she was listening to me, she started getting a mental image of Mickey Mouse ears, and a Mickey Mouse cartoon she had seen where Mickey lost his ears. Then, when Mickey found his ears and put them back on his hat, half of the full circle disappeared into the hat, so only a semicircle stuck out to make the ear.

(Her subconscious started to make non-linear connections. She let her subconscious flow without shutting it down.)

Then my student realized that the same thing was going on in the diagram we were looking at – the little circles were being “stuck” into the big circle and half of them were disappearing.

(Her subconscious/visual mind clearly showed her how to solve a problem she “didn’t know how to do.”)

Then she knew exactly what to do and was off and running! (She immediately applied her flash of insight to successfully solve the problem.)

What makes me SO HAPPY about this is… very advanced scientists, mathematicians, and inventors often rely on their creativity and their subconscious mind to solve the problems that really stretch the limits of their current understanding.

But you don’t have to wait until you’re in graduate school or interning at CERN to start working with your creativity and subconscious to solve problems.

In fact, you can start right now… even if you’re “just” a rising 7th grader!

Here’s how you, too, can start to invite more Albert Einstein moments into your math learning:

1. Be willing to engage with the unknown. When you see a scary problem that looks unfamiliar, instead of shutting down and saying, “I don’t know how to do this,” or, “I need someone else to show me what to do,” just say to yourself, “Why not just take a look at this and see what happens?

2. Let yourself play with the problem and explore. You don’t have to know what to do. Try to break it down into something you do know how to do. Look at it from different perspectives. It doesn’t have to make sense immediately.

3. Remember that it doesn’t have to be linear and you don’t have to force it. Just hold the problem lightly in your mind while you are exploring.

4. If you start to get some unrelated images or ideas, let them come through. Maybe they will show you how to solve the problem!

5. If you do have a lightbulb moment of insight, go ahead and apply it to the problem and solve! This is so satisfying!

6. VERY IMPORTANT: If you don’t solve the problem right away, it’s OK to take a break and come back to it later. (In fact, professional mathematicians and scientists do this on purpose! And many of the most important problems of their careers took them months or even years to solve.)

7. ALSO VERY IMPORTANT: Even if you DON’T solve the problem, practicing deliberately being with the unknown is incredibly valuable.

I’ve come to realize that deliberately being with the unknown and having the courage to experiment is maybe the most important skill we can learn in math and in life. To me, it is an incredible meta-skill that allows so many other beautiful learnings, creations, and opportunities to come through. Unfortunately, it’s something that is not mentioned or encouraged in most educational environments.

Just as an example of how this skill is developed as part of my work, when this student first came to me, what was going on was if she didn’t immediately know what to do, she would give up right away and ask her Mom to show her how to do the problem.

Now she her instinct is to explore, instead of give up, and she is living in a completely different world.

Is this a transformation you would like your child to also experience – from giving up as soon as they don’t know what to do, to having their own moments where they feel like Albert Einstein after a blinding flash of insight?

Then I invite you to apply to my super powerful one-on-ones tutoring programs. Just email me at rebecca@zooktutoring.com and my team will get you started with the application process, which
includes the opportunity for you to speak to me for a full 90 minutes and get clear on what’s going on in your kid’s math situation and whether or not it’s a fit for us to work together. (This level of attention to incoming families is unparalleled in the tutoring industry!)

Related posts:
Does having a math tutor make you a “loser”?
Case study: a 5th grader goes from thinking “math doesn’t like me” to singing and dancing about math while wearing a purple tutu
I just can’t keep this a secret any longer
How to experience math as your own unique creation
Is your kid a creative, passionate, unique visionary of the future?

The secret to getting straight As in math (it’s not what you think)

Wednesday, February 17th, 2016

I was recently talking with one of my favorite students about her goals for the upcoming school year.

She told me her big goal was to make straight As.

This actually made me kind of worried!

You might be thinking, what, Rebecca, are you CRAZY? Why would it be BAD for a kid to WANT to get straight As?

So … let me explain.

The reason why this made me a little worried is because what is most important to me as a math mastery mentor and joyful learning expert is that the students truly master the material.

I’ve found that when students are committed to the process of mastery, and receive aligned support, everything else just happens naturally – the confidence, the grades, successful classroom participation.

It’s all just a byproduct of the true foundation, which is the mastery process.

So I’m going to share a big secret with you – the same big secret that I shared with this student.

If you want to make straight As in math…

…focus on the habit, not on the goal.

I explained to this student that her success in math up to this point is all because of incremental habits that she’s been developing.

If she keeps doing these little incremental habits, those grades will come, whether or not she’s focused on them.

So here are the exact incremental habits that are the secret to getting As in math.

If you want to get straight As in math, this is what to focus on:

1. Keep track of your assignments so you know what’s due and when.

2. Give yourself plenty of time to complete the assignments and study for tests.

3. Practice new concepts until they are automatic (even if this means doing more practice than is assigned for homework).

4. ALWAYS make sure to get feedback on your work (like checking your problems in the back of the book) so you know whether or not you’re on track.

5. When you miss something on a test or quiz, go over it and figure out exactly what wrong and what you need to do differently next time.

6. Do extra practice of those types of problems you missed on the test or quiz, so they won’t be confusing when they come back in the future.
7. When you don’t understand something, keep a running list of problems, concepts, and vocabulary that aren’t clear and you want help with.

8. Ask for help with the things you don’t understand.

9. If the help you receive doesn’t work, keep looking until you find help that TRULY makes sense to you.

Do you want your creative, passionate kid to receive math help that actually makes clicks with their individual brain? Help that supports them in truly mastering math (and getting great grades and having awesome confidence as a result)?

Then I invite you to begin the application process for my individual math tutoring programs. This application process has been meticulously designed to help us both get clear about whether the special, magical way I work is a match for you.

Send me an email at rebecca@zooktutoring.com, and we’ll get you started on your application!

Related posts:
On optimal challenge
What to do when your kid makes a math mistake
Tips for a happy math year – #1
Tips for a happy math year – #2
Tips for a happy math year – #3

Afraid your math teacher will judge you?

Monday, February 15th, 2016

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Me (on the left) attending a workshop with Sandra Yancey (right), one of the most powerful female entrepreneurs in the world. I love the Carol Dweck quote in the background… “Becoming is better than being.”

This past week I got to attend an entire day-long workshop with Sandra Yancey, one of the most powerful female entrepreneurs in the world. This woman grew a huge national network and multi-million-dollar business from a handful of business cards. She is a powerhouse!

Out of the entire day, one of the things she said that struck me the most was, “We cannot thrive unless we have a place where we can be real.”

This is completely true for me personally – and why it’s essential for me to have my own mentor and my own colleagues and friends that I can be truly real with.

And I know it’s also so true for my students.

For example, I was recently in a session with one of my students, talking about whether or not she would ask her math teacher a particular question.

She stopped and said, “I’m afraid he’ll judge me.”

Wow! That is EXACTLY how I felt so many times when *I* was struggling with math growing up!

I had just never articulated it to myself before.

Even with math teachers who were really nice to me, sometimes even the niceness felt like a form of judgement. I’m highly sensitive, so I could FEEL it when someone was internally exasperated, but trying to act patient when I asked a question about something I “should have” already had down.

Is this something that you’re struggling with? Are you afraid that if you ask questions in class, your teacher will judge you?

(This can be especially difficult if you are a great student in every other subject. You’re used to doing your best and SHINING in the classroom when you participate, but with math, instead of shining, you fear that if you ask your questions, you’ll be judged or even feel ASHAMED that you don’t already know the answer.)

If this is what you’re facing, here’s what I recommend:

1. First, let yourself acknowledge this feeling. Don’t ignore it. Pay attention to it.

Why? If you ignore it, you will just subconsciously shut down on some level. You’ll stop seeking help, and on some level, you might even stop believing that anyone CAN help you, and that you’re doomed to feel this way forever.

It’s OK to recognize that asking for help in a particular situation, or asking for help from a particular person, might not be the best way to master the material.

2. Second, don’t judge yourself. When there’s a disconnection between your learning and how things are being taught in the classroom, it can be easy to start to despair or even start telling yourself things like “I’ll never get this… I must just not be a ‘math person’… maybe my brain is just not made for math… What is wrong with me, I am so good at every other subject… How can I be trying so hard and still be so confused…”

Emotions have a huge impact on learning, especially when we’re being challenged like never before. Be compassionate with yourself. Remember, math is a skill that you can acquire with persistent effort. There’s just some kind of disconnect happening between how you’re being taught and what you need to truly master the material. Nothing is wrong with you. Just be gentle and kind with yourself. ESPECIALLY if you are afraid others won’t be gentle and kind with you.

3. Third, be SUPER CLEAR with yourself exactly what it is that you have a question about. When you start to feel overwhelmed about math, it’s easy to look at something and just completely give up because your eyeballs don’t recognize it right away. It’s a completely natural human response – and, it’s also a very knee-jerk, superficial way of engaging with the material.

Take a deep breath. Take a break. Then come back to the material and look at it so, so slowly. Try to take it apart. Ask yourself questions. Why are they doing this specific step here? Does it remind you of something you already know how to do? Let yourself read the math book and do the problem at like one mile per hour.

Try to refine your question from something super general like “I have no idea what’s happening here and I just want to burst into tears and throw this book out the window” to “OK, why did they substitute ‘u’ in for ‘x’? How did they get from step 2 to step 3? Where can I see another example?”

Paradoxically, getting super clear with yourself about EXACTLY WHAT YOU’RE CONFUSED ABOUT is a way to… un-confuse yourself. I promise!

4. Finally, find a place to ask your math questions where you aren’t afraid of being judged. A place where it is safe to be real. Your math classroom and math textbook are not the only source of math knowledge. Try your friends, your peers, teachers you’ve had in the past that you understood better, a different textbook, an online video.

Or, if you’d like to explore whether my magical one-on-one math tutoring programs would be a fit for you and your family, send me an email at rebecca@zooktutoring.com and we’ll get you started with my special application! I’m excited to connect with you!

Related posts:
Face your fears, get a higher grade
Math student’s bill of rights
I just can’t keep this a secret any longer
Case study: confused by math instruction in a foreign language

Come meet me in person at UC Santa Barbara – Sunday 2/14!

Wednesday, February 10th, 2016

15.10.24STEMDuyTran (574)

Does it break your heart to hear your child say things like, “I’m not good at math?”

Do you wish that math could be something you and your child actually enjoyed TOGETHER?

Or maybe your child is confident with math, but you’re already worried about what will happen when the material gets harder?

This Sunday I’ll be speaking at a very special conference, Tech Savvy at UC Santa Barbara, which is one of the only conferences in the world with programming for both 6-9th grade girls AND their parents.

Join me for special interactive, hands-on workshops on How to Raise a Math-Confident Daughter (for parents) and a Math Mastermind (for girls)!

In these workshops, you will:
-discover how to support your daughter to achieve true mastery, rise to the top of their class, and even come to experience math as a source of joy and a type of self-expression.
-walk away with clear steps, case studies, and tools that you can use immediately to ensure math confidence and success.

And your daughter will:
-be nurtured in her creative, higher-level problem-solving abilities
-be encouraged to experiment in a completely supportive environment
-grow her courage and confidence as she discovers how much she can both learn from and help other girls!

Date: Sunday, February 14th
Time: 9-5 pm (I won’t be speaking the entire day, but my presentations are part of the day-long event)
Location: UC Santa Barbara Student Resource Building, Goleta, CA
Cost: $10 per person (adult or student)

Click here to register.

This is a very rare opportunity to see me speak in person on the west coast.

This event will provide powerful support not only for your child but also for you as the parent, so it’s highly recommended that parents also attend!

I would love to see you there!

Sending you love,
REBECCA

What to do when your kid’s math fills you with dread

Wednesday, February 10th, 2016

Parents routinely come to me with this situation. Your passionate, creative, unique, visionary kid has been struggling with math for months (or even years), even though they’re already giving it everything they’ve got.

You’re spending hours on Khan Academy every night trying to untangle your kid’s homework, teaching yourself so you can teach them. Instead of having dinner as a family, you’re working on math.

Your kid is so frustrated and stressed about math that they routinely break down and cry. Or maybe they’re just so anxious that you’re starting to pick up their anxiety yourself, and you’re struggling to filter everything you say, just to make sure you don’t snap at them.

You feel drained, burdened, even resentful. You come home from work, and instead of being excited to see your kid and have this precious time with them, you are filled with dread about the math you’ll need to help them with tonight. Again. Night after night. No end in sight.

And the days when they have tests are the worst. When you pick them up after school, you feel this knot in your stomach worrying about how they did.

You’re already worrying about the doors that will be shut to them if they don’t feel comfortable with math. You don’t care whether or not they pursue math as a career – you just really, really don’t want their math phobia to get in the way of their dreams coming true.

You might have even already taken then to a tutoring center and they hated it. Maybe they felt embarrassed that someone they knew might see them. Maybe they were just turned off by having to do worksheet after worksheet. And even though it was supposed to solve the problem, the tutoring center wasn’t able to help your kid either.

And you’re starting to feel extremely guilty, because even though you’re trying everything you can humanly think of, your superhuman efforts are not creating results. Your kid isn’t really understanding, they’re not really learning, and they’re not getting good grades. Sometimes you feel like a failure as a parent.

In a few years, your kid will be in college, out of the house forever, and right now, your precious time together as a family is being completely consumed by struggling with math.

You feel completely stuck.

Does this sound familiar? Is this what you’re facing?

Please know that you are not alone. Nothing is wrong with you. There is just something missing. You aren’t getting the support you need to truly understand, and neither is your kid, but that doesn’t mean that either of you is mathematically incapable. There’s just a gap between what you need and the resources that you have in front of you.

Please know that what you’re facing is not insurmountable. Just because you have been struggling for months or years does not mean that you have to struggle forever.

For example, I personally spent years struggling in silence with math and thinking that I was “not a math person.”

Now I’m on the other side, and I have helped many other families go from being completely consumed about math to feeling happy, relaxed, and confident about math – even in really extreme situations where a kid was so anxious about math they refused to do their homework unless they were sitting next to their mom, or, another example, where a previous tutor had told the family that math was like a foreign language and their daughter only spoke five words.

Please know that you don’t have to stay stuck. It is completely possible to find support that results in lasting math transformation – even if you feel like you’ve already tried everything and nothing has worked.

Please know that you don’t have to keep doing what you’re doing. If it’s not working, doing MORE of what’s not working is not going to create the transformation that you desire.

Please know that you don’t have to do this by yourself. You do not have to reteach yourself all of the math you ever learned. You do not need to be the one trying to ensure that your kid understands. You do not need keep spending hours on Khan Academy every night trying to figure out what they heck your kid is supposed to do. You do not need to continue to feel this dread about your kid’s next math grade.

If you’re ready to invest in world-class, one-on-one math mastery support for your passionate, creative kid, send me an email at rebecca@zooktutoring.com. We’ll get you started with my super special application process to explore whether or not the magical way I work would be a good fit for you and your family! I can’t wait to connect and create this same lasting transformation for YOU!

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How to know when it’s time to stop tutoring your own kid
Case study: an 8th grader goes from “math meltdown” to “math touchdown!”
What to do when you get a disappointing math test grade