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What Parents Of Math-Confident Children Secretly Do (That Typical Parents Don’t) – #4

Tuesday, January 23rd, 2018

4. Math-masterful parents are focused on the long-term process of mastery.

Typical parents focus on just getting math over with.

Math is so stressful that they just want to help their kids complete their homework assignments as quickly as possible.

But this never gets below the surface to the actual root problems that are causing the math anxiety and stress.

In contrast, math-masterful parents focus on whether their child is deeply understanding and internalizing the material, not just getting their homework done.

As part of this, math-masterful parents are proactive, not reactive.

Instead of being in crisis mode, waiting to see if they have math issues, scheduling support only around tests, or reacting to the artificial rhythms of the school year, these parents put support in place consistently and let their child’s mastery needs set the pace.

Like athletes or performing artists, math-masterful families train consistently.

They still take breaks and vacations, but use holidays and summer breaks as a powerful secret compartment to catch up, get ahead, and stay connected to math—to enjoy math on their own terms.

This consistent training develops their own inner math sanctuary that supports them, once they’re back from vacation, no matter what is going on in their classroom or curriculum.

And because they invest this time and energy in consistent math mastery training, they end up having a much more relaxed and happy school year, because their child is actually confident and prepared.

As a quick example of this, one family came to me towards the end of 5th grade after years of struggling with math and not getting what they needed from typical tutoring.

We worked together throughout the summer between 5th and 6th grade—still taking some breaks, but making sure that this student was really connecting to math and loving it.

Her first day back of 6th grade, this student was the only kid in the room who knew what the commutative property was, and nailed question after question after question until her teacher just started laughing!

More recently, a student and I used her spring break as an opportunity to get ahead and really understand logarithms.

Just a few days ago she told me that she was the only student in her class who actually understood them.

And her mom now experiences her daughter’s school vacations as much more relaxing, because there’s no more math dread.

Do you wish your child could go through this same transformation?

I would love to talk to you.

Just fill out this application here.

As soon as your application is received and reviewed, I’ll reach out to schedule a special appointment for us to connect on the phone and get clear on how I could best support your family.

I can’t wait to connect!

Sending you love,
REBECCA

Related posts:
What Parents Of Math-Confident Children Secretly Do (That Typical Parents Don’t) – #1
What Parents Of Math-Confident Children Secretly Do (That Typical Parents Don’t) – #2
What Parents Of Math-Confident Children Secretly Do (That Typical Parents Don’t) – #3

Case Study: A 5th grader goes from believing “math doesn’t like me” to singing and dancing about math while wearing her purple tutu

Monday, January 22nd, 2018

When this fifth grade student first came to me, her mom told me, “My daughter is joyful about everything in her life – except for math.” This student was so anxious and uncertain about math that she refused to do her homework unless she was literally sitting next to her mom. She would tell her mom, “math doesn’t like me.”

This put a lot of pressure and stress on her mom, who was doing everything she could to try to help her daughter succeed at math, but she felt like she she was failing her daughter and being a “bad mother” because she couldn’t find a solution. The mom felt anxious picking her daughter up from school because she wasn’t sure whether or not her daughter would have a math temper tantrum. And even though when her daughter would express her feelings of math inadequacy, she was really just asking for help, it was so stressful for the mom that the mom sometimes would react with frustration just because she was so worn down from the seemingly endless math stress.

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I started working with this student towards the end of her fifth grade school year. Because this student loves to dance and sing and has a great passion for musical theater, I started teaching her math songs to help her remember different concepts and formulas. We also really focused on filling in the gaps and building a strong foundation.

Midway through the summer, this student started spontaneously singing her math problems! She would make up these little operas about all the different math operations she was doing – as well as songs just about math concepts in general, with sophisticated lyrics that showed she really got the concepts. She would even come to some of her sessions wearing her purple tutu. I was overjoyed to see her expressing herself so confidently and creatively with math, even with her outfits. At the same time, her mom and I also weren’t yet sure how this would transfer to the classroom.

Her first day back at school, her first middle school math class of 6th grade, the teacher asked a question, and my student just couldn’t help herself – she shouted out, “It’s because of the commutative property!” It turned out that no one else in her class – even the students she thought of as being very strong mathematicians – had even heard of the commutative property before! This was a huge boost to my student’s confidence and enjoyment!

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Since her first day back at school as a sixth grader, she has consistently made 90s or 100s on every single math test and quiz she’s taken – except for one! On this test, she got an 88%, and what is so interesting is that this absolutely didn’t defeat her.

When she talked about it with her mom, the focus was just about making sure to get the test back from the teacher, so we could go over what she didn’t understand in our tutoring sessions and learn from it. In some ways this was an even bigger victory than the tests where she scored higher, because it showed how much her mindset had shifted. We could see her resilience in how she dealt with a lower grade, and how her attitude had shifted to “I’ll get it, because I know I can get it.”

Just as important, the mom’s experience has shifted dramatically now that she isn’t the one who is helping her daughter with math. She shared with me that when she comes home from work, it’s easy for her energy to be fully engaged with her daughter because it isn’t sapped by worrying about helping her with her math homework right away. She can just decompress and regroup and be energized and be a good parent. And her daughter has become so much more independent that the mom can be reading a book in another room while her daughter is doing her homework on her own!

How did we create this totally awesome math transformation? Let me tell you all about it!

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1. Positive, relaxed environment. We fostered an environment of trust and camaraderie. Our work together is committed and also relaxed; this student is totally free to make mistakes, ask questions, or go over whatever it is she needs to go over, no matter what.

2. Dealing with math feelings.
When this student is overjoyed, anxious, or heartbroken, we deal with it together head-on. There was one session very early on where she (quite understandably) cried because she was so disappointed and frustrated with a recent grade. Instead of squelching this or ending the session, we just talked it out, making a safe space for her to feel, express, and release her frustration and disappointment. Other times she was so happy with what she was learning and accomplishing that she would dance and sing with glee and pride!

3. Consciously fostering a “growth mindset” with math. This student has an awesome “growth mindset” when it comes to her work in musical theater. She will audition over and over again for the same Broadway show, and instead of getting discouraged if she hasn’t gotten a part yet, she is just really excited about the process and the experience.

At the same time, there have been periods where she has really expressed more of a “fixed mindset” about math – “you have it or you don’t,” and being worried that she wasn’t one of the ones who “had it.” We deliberately take time to talk about this together and draw parallels with her work in the theater so that she can pull that already-existing growth mindset into her math.

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For example, just this week, this student expressed both concern and hope about a state-wide test she was taking the next day. She wanted to score high enough to be selected for state and national math events, and she was also worried that there would be stuff on the test that she didn’t know because she wasn’t in the “honors level class.”

We discussed at length how it’s like if she went to an audition and they asked her to play the bagpipes and do a Scottish accent, she wouldn’t beat herself up for not already knowing how to do those things – after the audition, she would just ask her teachers and coaches to help her learn, if that’s something she was interested in being able to do. Then she shared her philosophy of auditioning, which is that “it’s not just about the part, it’s about the experience, and if you’re not focused on the part, it will just naturally happen.” We drew direct parallels with what she tells herself during her auditions and what she can tell herself during her math tests.


4. Self-expression.
In the context of a supportive environment of trust where all of our work is super individualized, this student started to express herself more and more, whether it was singing the math songs she’d learned, making up her own original math songs, singing herself through the math problem she was working on, wearing her purple tutu, or decorating her problems with hot pink drawings (some of which are included in this very blog post)! Seeing her experience math as a vehicle of self-expression is absolutely encouraged, because it’s a huge sign that the student is getting way more comfortable and also really internalizing the material at a deeper level.

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5. Support is normalized. Just like this student didn’t stop taking voice lessons or going to dance class once she started getting parts in musicals, math support that fosters her autonomy is now just part of her normal routine. Instead of saying, “Well, now her grades are higher, she’s done with math mentoring,” this student and her parents have recommitted to receiving support so that she can just continue to grow her math abilities and confidence more and more, and that her family can experience an even deeper experience of harmony around math.

I am so, so proud of this student, and how her persistence, vulnerability, and commitment has created such true mastery, confidence, and JOY with her math!

Are you tired of feeling like a bad parent because even though you’re doing everything you can to help your kid with math, it isn’t working?

Does it break your heart to see your own purple-tutu-wearing kid have meltdowns about math?

Are you ready to invest in high-level support?

Just click here to get started with your special application for my one-on-one math tutoring programs.

Once your application is received, we’ll set up a special phone call to get clear if my approach would be a good fit for your child.

I can’t wait to hear from you!

Sending you love,
REBECCA

Related Posts:
Case Study: A Rising 8th grader masters her summer math packet
Case study: A seventh grader goes from “I don’t get it” to getting 100 percents
Case Study: an ADHD student goes from a D to an A
I just can’t keep this a secret any longer

What changes when someone believes in you?

Sunday, January 21st, 2018

Math Butterfly

(Here’s a “math butterfly” one of my students and I created during a recent tutoring session!)

What changes when someone believes in you?

I’ve been thinking about this a lot lately.

I just had a huge performance breakthrough on my cello with my acting coach, and I’m getting ready for my quarterly business retreat with my business mentor. I’m going to be spending over a week surrounded by people who love me and believe in my highest potential and biggest vision.

In both of these situations, I feel so safe and accepted to really go for it, and I cannot believe how much better my music and my business and teaching gets as a result.

It completely changes my concept of what I’m capable of. It makes me believe that my dreams really can come true, because I can see it already happening.

Let me tell you, though, it hasn’t always been like this! At ALL.

Just as an example, not so long ago, when I was in graduate school for cello performance, I went to audition for two different summer chamber music festivals.

At the first audition, the person I was auditioning for radiated skepticism about me and my abilities. I didn’t feel very comfortable – I could tell she thought I had something to prove. She asked pointedly, “Do you have anything fast you could play for me?” I don’t even remember how I responded to that, but I remember thinking that if she accepted me into her festival, she would think she was doing me a favor, and I would feel seriously inferior.

The very next day, I went to audition for an amazing violinist, and took the commuter rail all the way out to New Jersey to meet her at the festival location. Her demeanor was so warm and welcoming and enthusiastic. I felt so comfortable!

I had fun playing for her, and when I was finished, she said very firmly, “You DEFINITELY have what it takes to be accepted to this festival!”

So guess which festival I ended up attending?

Yes, the one with the enthusiastic and welcoming teacher!

This experience was a real turning point for me. At this festival, I played the Cello 2 part in the Mendelssohn String Octet, which is both one of my most favorite-est pieces of music in the WORLD, and has an unbelievably hairy and notorious cello solo at the beginning of the last movement – that I had to learn!

This amazing violinist teacher went completely out of her way to set me up to really rock it. She even demonstrated how to play this solo holding a GRAPEFRUIT instead of using her fingers! And her musical partner and husband, also an incredible teacher, gave me a great fingering. I learned how to do it!

When we performed, I just went for it. And the audience response was so phenomenal. We were playing in a church, and the audience members stood up and BANGED on the pews, they were so excited! We were riveting!

This experience gave me the rock-solid conviction that classical music can be just as electrifying as anything else – and can truly bring an audience to its feet with RAUCOUS joy, not just polite or intellectual appreciation!

Looking back on this experience, it is so funny to me that that first person I auditioned for was skeptical that I could play fast. Because the second person, the amazing violinist, trusted me and helped me learn a SUPER FAST cello solo that I completely rocked (if I do say so myself)!

So what changes when someone believes in you?

I think it’s really simple.

1. When someone believes in you, they automatically ask you to do more.

2. Ideally, they also give you the TOOLS to actually DO it.

3. You have the opportunity and the tools to go beyond what you thought you were capable of.

4. You experience mastery! Breakthroughs happen! People respond with incredible enthusiasm! You are so excited and happy!

5. You believe in yourself, and you keep going. You begin to inhabit a COMPLETELY DIFFERENT REALITY.

Amazing, right? But – let’s look at the shadow side.

What happens when the teacher or mentor you trust DOESN’T believe in you?

1. They don’t trust you, so they don’t ask you to do more.

2. They usually don’t give you the tools to do more because they actually don’t know how to really help you, or they don’t even think you would “get it.” (A lot of times this is subconscious or unconscious on the teacher’s part, I’ve found.)

3. You don’t go beyond what you thought you were capable of. Your idea of what you can do starts to shrink.

4. Super important: you subconsciously pick up that they don’t believe in you and you start to entrain with that. You start to believe in yourself less, and you don’t do as well.

5. Or you start pouring an enormous amount of mental, emotional, and spiritual energy into defending yourself in your own mind. But inside you really just feel like you suck.

6. Downward spiral continues until you shift the pattern or reincarnate and start over!

Trust me, I know, because I’VE BEEN THERE! I have wasted so much time and energy with people who did not believe in me… constantly feeling insecure and defending myself in my mind. And I did not bloom. If I improved, it was so slow and painful. And I did not shine at my fullest light. This was not helpful for me or anyone else!

Two caveats:

1. Caveat #1: It doesn’t work if your teacher or mentor wants it for you more than you want it for yourself. You have to want it as much as your teacher or mentor, or even more.

2. Caveat #2: Don’t get me wrong. I know that there are times in life where we are going to encounter people who don’t believe in us. I’m not saying that we can only talk to or work with people who are constantly cheerleading us and telling us we’re awesome. (In fact, that’s not really what this awesome teacher did – she challenged me and gave me the tools I needed, which is so different from empty praise.)

But it IS up to us who we choose to study with and learn from. It IS up to us who we trust with our unfolding dreams. And it is so much more FUN and so much more POWERFUL and everything happens like a BAZILLION times FASTER when we choose to spend time with people who believe in us. It’s like the difference between picking crumbs off the floor of a MacDonalds and feasting on your favorite foods with people who love you!

If you or your kid is suffering in math right now because of a crisis of confidence – if you are feeling like your kid’s teacher doesn’t believe in them anymore, or you’re worried that your kid doesn’t believe in themselves, or that they feel deep down inside that “math doesn’t like me anymore” or “I’m not good at math” even though they’re busting their butt and trying their absolute best, I would love to talk to you.

Just click here to get started with your special application for my one-on-one math tutoring programs.

Once your application is received, and we’ll get you all set up with a super special complimentary appointment, just me and you, to get clear on what’s going on with your kid’s math learning and whether or not it would make sense for us to work together!

Update: Me + my cello are going to Iceland!

Monday, August 7th, 2017

Rebecca Zook playing cello in Central Park – Photo Credit Martin Lee #ChineysPhoto

Hey beautiful ones!

I am so excited!

I’ve been invited to Iceland to perform and record with my cello this August in a sacred cave, on a magical glacier, and in an ancient forest full of elves!

So I will be stepping out of my office to fully immerse myself in the Iceland experience.

After taking two weeks as a full break, I’ll just be serving my magical math mentoring clients from Iceland while performing and recording.

I am totally looking forward to sharing this new magical Iceland energy with you when I return!

In the meantime, if you are interested in working with me one-on-one, you can submit your application for my special math mastery programs here.

I will be scheduling application interviews for when my schedule is open in September.

In the meantime, if you’d like to to follow my magical cello adventure in Iceland, I’ll be sharing updates right here on my facebook music page, including videos of me performing.

Sending you love,
REBECCA

PS. Update to the update: I’ve now returned from Iceland and am accepting applications for new students!

If you would math to feel like a magical adventure for your child,
just fill out this application here.

Once your application is received, I will reach out to schedule a special application interview for us to get clear on whether my work would be a fit for your family.

I’m so excited to receive your application!

Now interviewing candidates for Making Math Magical Summer Mastery Program

Tuesday, June 6th, 2017


I am super excited! I am starting to interview candidates for my very special Making Math Magical Summer Mastery Program!

Here are the details:

This summer, Rebecca Zook, Math Mastery Mentor and Joyful Learning Expert, and founder of Purple Tutu Math Tutoring, is offering a very special
Making Math Magical Summer Mastery Program:
a private, one-on-one, live, math summer camp
completely customized in every single nanosecond to your child’s unique, magnificent mind.

Do you feel totally lost when it comes to setting up your child to be successful with summer math?

Are you worried about the 2.6 months of grade level math learning that are typically lost each summer?

Your child can use the summer to catch up or get ahead with math without having it be a boring, stressful chore, but actually magical, meaningful, fun, and effective, so your child is competent and confident.

This camp is especially suitable for creative, passionate, unique, visionary kids,

whether they are in crisis (freaking out, failing, or secretly crying themselves to sleep about math, even though they’re trying their best),

or if they are in “math-preventative” or “math-acceleration” mode and want to use the summer to get ahead or bump up a level.

Making Math Magical: Summer Mastery Program is the equivalent of private training with an elite athlete or performing artist, nurturing your child to achieve math mastery and experience math as a source of joy and strength.

For students from rising 4th through 12th grade.

Does this sound like something you’d like to explore?

Just fill out this special application.

Once your application is received, I’ll reach out to schedule a special interview appointment for us to talk on the phone and get clear on whether this program would be a fit for your child.

I am so looking forward to connecting with you so we can make math magical this summer!

Sending you love,
REBECCA

UPDATE: Enrollment for my summer programs is now closed. Click here to apply for my magical fall programs!

What Parents Of Math-Confident Children Secretly Do (That Typical Parents Don’t) – #3

Friday, May 5th, 2017

There’s a very specific set of PARENT beliefs and behaviors that allows a child to actually go through this life-changing transformation from math freakout to math mastery.

But most parents don’t know about these beliefs and behaviors – and don’t fully understand what a child in math crisis actually needs to become math-confident.

So I am on a mission to educate parents about this!

In my first article in this series, I shared how math-masterful parents see high-level support as normal and desirable, both for their child and for themselves. (Full article here.)

Second, parents of Math Masters are no longer willing to suffer or wait. (Read the full post here.)

And third…

3. Math-masterful parents recognize when it’s time to bring in outside support.

Typical parents do not recognize when their help is no longer moving their child forward.

They tend to deny it, or overcompensate for it.

They tell themselves things like, “Well, even though my daughter’s telling me she never understands my explanations, I’ll just get better at explaining it to her somehow.”

Other typical parents will just continue to acquire more and more information, believing that if they just get the right workbook or alternate curriculum, somehow it will mean they’re suddenly able to connect with their kid.

They tell themselves that, even though they’re completely exhausted,
“I just need to find more energy” (out of nowhere)
or “I just need to be more positive” (even though they’re completely discouraged).

In contrast, math-masterful parents recognize when it’s time to bring in outside support.

For example, a parent came to me because she was locked in a toxic math dynamic with her daughter.

Her daughter refused to do her math homework unless she was sitting next to her mom, but was so anxious that she would trigger her mom’s frustration, and then, massive guilt.

Even though they were working super hard, the daughter’s math grades continued to slide, and she wasn’t truly mastering the material.

This mom recognized that she was not the one to help her daughter, and chose to bring me in to break the pattern.

Now her daughter happily does her math homework independently, and her mom can literally relax and read a book in another room.

Their toxic mother-daughter math dynamic has been totally healed.

Would you like to experience this same transformation, from math freakout to math mastery and confidence?

I would love to connect with you and explore how I could best support your child to truly love math and experience it as master-able and magical.

Just fill out this application here.

Once your application is received, I’ll reach out to schedule a special time for us to talk on the phone and get clear on if my work would make sense for your family.

I can’t wait to connect!

Sending you love,
REBECCA

Related posts:
How to know when it’s time to stop tutoring your own kid
What to do when your kid’s math fills you with dread
Do you wish your kid could feel like Albert Einstein?

What parents of math-confident children secretly do (that typical parents don’t) – #2

Tuesday, April 18th, 2017

I’ve come to understand that many parents tend to misunderstand what is actually needed for a child in math crisis to become math-confident.

Did you know that parents of math-confident children have a very specific set of beliefs and behaviors that set them apart?

I’m on a mission to educate parents about this.

First (as I shared in my last article about this), math-masterful parents see high-level support as normal and desirable, both for their child and for themselves. (Full details here.)

Second, parents of Math Masters are no longer willing to suffer or wait.

Typical parents tend to respond to a child’s persistent math struggles by waiting and hoping that their math issues will just magically go away by themselves.

They will tell themselves things like, “Let’s just wait and see what happens,”
“Let’s see how my child does between now and the end of the year,”
or “It will start clicking for my child eventually.”

But almost always, what happens is, in the best case scenario, the child barely manages to keep their head above water.

Or, worst case scenario, the child’s math understanding spirals downward…and the situation just keeps getting worse.

In contrast, math-masterful parents face reality and take control.

They understand on a deep level that if they continue to do the same things that aren’t working, they’ll just continue to get the same results.

Their child will struggle and suffer, and so will the parent.

So math-masterful parents choose to take a different action to create a different result.

When faced with an opportunity to receive support that will actually help their kid, they say yes and move forward.

As a quick example, one family was referred to me by a colleague at the child’s school. The student was tired of struggling and went to the math department head with her mom to ask for a referral to a math tutor.

This department head knew that the student loves to sing and dance, so she told her and her mom, “You should call Rebecca, because she sings about math.”

When the daughter told her mom, “Let’s call Rebecca right away,” they ACTUALLY called.

And we started working together almost immediately.

After our very first session, the mom emailed me that a weight had been lifted off her shoulders.

And the mom’s relief only increased as her daughter continued to receive this aligned support and get consistently great grades.

Did I just describe *your* mindset? Do you see high-level math mentoring support as normal and desirable? Are you no longer willing to wait while your child continues to suffer from math challenges?

I would love to connect and explore how I could best support your family.

To take the first step, just fill out this application here:

Once your application is received, I’ll reach out to schedule a special appointment time for us to connect and get clear on what’s not working, what you want instead, and whether my work would be a fit.

I’m totally excited to hear from you!

Sending you love,
REBECCA

Related Posts:
What parents of math-confident children secretly do (that typical parents don’t) – #1
The secret ingredients of true math mastery
When doing your math homework just isn’t cutting it

What parents of math-confident children secretly do (that typical parents don’t) – #1

Tuesday, April 11th, 2017

I recently had an epiphany.

I’ve come to understand that in my case studies and articles, I’ve been focused primarily on student behavior and student results.

Yet each of these transformations was only possible because of their parent’s behavior and beliefs.

Just like a Wimbleton champion works out differently than a typical person, or a billionaire invests differently than a typical investor, parents who set their kids up to be math masters (whether or not they’re involved in their child’s day-to-day learning) have a very specific set of beliefs and behaviors that set them apart.

Let’s look at exactly how you can choose to adapt these beliefs and behaviors to create this transformation into math mastery for your child.

1. Math-masterful parents see high-level support as normal and desirable, both for their child and for themselves.

A “typical parent” mindset is usually something like,

“If my child has a math tutor, it means that they are in some way ‘less than’ or ‘not smart,’ because smart kids don’t need help.”

And then they focus on getting away with as little support as possible, or ‘weaning’ their child off of the support they have in place, because they’re concerned their child will be dependent.

This is a fundamental misunderstanding of what it means to truly be a master.

Masters receive the highest-level support available.

And they do so consistently.

You wouldn’t quit singing lessons after winning the lead in a musical.

You wouldn’t fire your personal trainer after qualifying for the Olympics.

You wouldn’t get elected President of the United States and then not have a cabinet.

Just like that, math-masterful parents understand that having high-level math support is normal AND desirable, and they set their kids up with the highest support available.

As a quick example, one mom came to me because her daughter was joyful about everything in her life except math, which made her miserable and anxious. And then the mom was also miserable and anxious.

Her approach was to set her daughter up with math support just like singing lessons and dance classes—as just another important piece in the big picture of her daughter’s life.

Now her daughter is happy and confident about math, and the mom is relaxed because her daughter is relaxed.

Did I just describe *your* mindset?

Do you see high-level math mentoring support as normal and desirable?

Are you no longer willing to wait while your child continues to suffer from math challenges?

I would love to connect and explore how I could best support your family.

To take the first step, just fill out this application here.

Once your application is received, I’ll reach out to schedule a special appointment time for us to connect and get clear on what’s not working, what you want instead, and whether my work would be a fit.

I’m totally excited to hear from you!

Sending you love,
REBECCA

PS. More secrets of math-masterful parents will be posted here – this is just #1 of 6!

Related posts:
Does having a math tutor make you a “loser”?
What to do when your kid’s math terrifies you
How to know when it’s time to stop tutoring your own kid

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

Wednesday, March 15th, 2017

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, just click here to get started with your special application for my one-on-one math tutoring programs.

Once your application is received, we’ll set up a special phone call 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!

Related posts:
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

Three simple steps to tell if your kid actually understands what’s going on with math

Wednesday, March 1st, 2017

Have you ever been helping your kid with math, and just really wanted to know whether or not they were getting it? Or maybe you got the feeling that your kid might be confused about something, but you couldn’t put a finger on what it was yourself. Well, let me share with you my special time-tested technique for dealing with this exact situation!

First, ask the question, “What questions do you have?” instead of “Do you have any questions?”

There are several reasons for this:

When we are asked “do you have any questions?” most of us have been socially conditioned to say “no,” without really thinking about whether or not we do need something cleared up. So asking “DO you have any questions” is not super effective.

“WHAT questions do you have,” because it assumes that you have questions, encourages people to actually try to come up with something they have questions about, instead of just glibly saying “no.” It also makes it normal to have questions, and treats the need for clarification as just a natural, built-in part of the learning process.

Second, wait up to seven seconds for your kid to respond. Why? Research has found that it usually takes seven seconds to formulate a question when you’re asked if you have one. This can feel really uncomfortable the first few times, since we’re not used to waiting like this. But it is absolutely worth it.

Third, only ask “What questions do you have?” if you genuinely want to know and you have time
to address the questions that your kid may have. If you don’t actually mean it, A, over time, the question will lose its power, and B, your kid will feel that they don’t actually have a chance to ask their questions and it just becomes a fake formality.

(I’ve had to be careful with this myself – for example, to not ask for questions when I only have 30 seconds left before I need to talk to my next student! If you’re in that kind of situation, just trust that you will be able to take care of the questions your kid has at a later moment when you can give it your full attention.)

Do you dream of your daughter or son receiving high-level, individualized one-on-one support that’s customized completely in every nanosecond? Do you prioritize investing in your child’s education above all else? Do you just want a caring professional to take over your family’s “math situation” so you can just focus on being a mom or dad, and not have to do the tutoring yourself?

Just click here to get started with your special application for my one-on-one math tutoring programs. Once your application is received, we’ll set up a special phone call to get clear if my approach would be a good fit for your child.

I’m here for you, and I’m so glad we’re connected!

Sending you love,
REBECCA