How to Beat the Summer Brain Rot in Math Skills

At MATH 1-2-3®, we have always firmly believed that summer is a wonderful opportunity for all math students, from elementary school to middle school and from high school to college and beyond, to make the most of the time away from school. While most, or even all, students likely think of summer as a time of freedom and a well-earned break from academic responsibilities, the reality is that summer learning loss hurts already struggling students and presents challenges to all students. This is especially true in math. Working with the right, experienced, highly rated math tutors can help.  We love to see our tutoring students balancing fun and relaxation with math instruction focused on the students’ individual needs. 

Enjoying summer with no school or math class

Each summer, our experienced math tutors meet, in-person, or online, with students looking to work on material they will cover in the coming school year, so they can get ahead of their classmates and achieve higher grades. We also work with students who struggled in math class during the school year, helping to fill in the blanks on work they did not fully understand, so they can build on those skills in the coming year, or in future courses. We have spent summers (and the school year), working with students of all abilities, on topics including, but not limited to algebra, trigonometry, geometry, pre-calculus, calculus and probability and statistics. During the summers, our tutors also work to prepare students for upcoming standardized tests, including the PSAT, SAT, SSAT, ISEE, ACT, Regents math, AP Calculus AB, AP Calculus BC, and high school and college placement tests.

We know that some math students are not necessarily enthusiastic about the prospect of being tutored over the summer. Once upon a time, we were children too, so we understand. Our experienced and highly qualified math tutors work hard to make math study interesting, to motivate students to want to learn, to encourage and support students and to demonstrate the value of developing strong skills. We know the vast benefits that math students reap from tutoring which include increased skills, increased confidence, higher grades and standardized test scores and decreased math anxiety. The time that math students invest in studying math over the summer is an investment in their future success. Whether a student is looking to address and improve deficiencies, get ahead for the coming year, or prepare for standardized tests, like the PSAT, SAT, SSAT, ISEE, ACT, Regents Math, AP Calculus AB, AP Calculus BC, and high school and college placement tests, students who work with experienced, highly qualified MATH 1-2-3® tutors make strides toward their goals.  

At MATH 1-2-3®, we continue to hear from parents and students from all over Fairfield County and Westchester County, who are seeing, and struggling with, the effects of the interruption in education caused by COVID-19. We applaud and support the parents who were pressed into service as stand-in teachers during such a challenging time and we are sympathetic to challenges faced by students expected to learn under difficult circumstances. We are here to help. Summer is the perfect time to get students the tutoring that will assist them in combatting the effects of school year challenges.

Our tutors worked with students throughout the pandemic, to supplement on-line instruction and to help parents teach unfamiliar skills and concepts to their children. We tutored students in Pre-calculus, Calculus, AP Calculus, Pre-algebra, Algebra I, Algebra II, College algebra, Trigonometry, Geometry, Probability & Statistics, AP Statistics, and IB Mathematics. As the world reopens and summer vacation begins, parents are contacting MATH 1-2-3® concerned that their children fell behind in their math class during the pandemic, that their children are experiencing math anxiety as they look ahead to their classes in the Fall and that their children are not prepared for the next level of math, or for standardized tests, like the PSAT, SAT, SSAT, ISEE, ACT, Regents Math, AP Calculus AB, AP Calculus BC, and high school and college placement tests.

We have heard from parents and students from all over Connecticut and New York, that online classes did not feel like “real school,” which we certainly understand. However, the problem, especially in math, is that students are expected to have learned the information that was taught during the time they were learning remotely and material that will be covered in future classes will build on the topics taught during the pandemic. Math students who are not prepared may experience anxiety, lower grades and frustration.   

We know that for some math students, keeping up with their studies during the pandemic was anywhere from challenging to almost impossible.  We understand that many math students struggled to learn remotely. Schools and teachers were presented with unprecedented challenges, which, in turn, meant that math students were presented with unprecedented challenges. At MATH 1-2-3®, we have heard from students that some schools and teachers sent out assignments without explanation or help readily available. With instruction on-line, math students were often left without a resource when they had questions, needed homework support or wanted additional examples of the math problems they were working on. For math students having difficulty understanding certain concepts or developing certain skills, tutoring is an efficient way to help them.  In our experience, students report that they are much happier spending time working with a tutor than struggling on to overwhelming confusion. Parents are also happier not having to Google solutions or teach themselves unfamiliar topics so they can teach their children.

Although the pandemic presented unique challenges, at MATH 1-2-3®, our experience has shown us, and our tutoring students, that math tutoring during the summer (not just this summer) helps students bridge any gaps in learning, boosts performance, improves test scores, practices foundational skills, and lessens math anxiety and test anxiety.

Math tutoring during the summer allows students to fill in any gaps in knowledge from the previous year’s math course.  In any given math class, there are students who learn in a variety of different ways. Oftentimes, students need supplemental one-on-one instruction, or reinforcement, but either do not have access to it in school, or are reluctant to ask for help. This leads to significant and impactful holes in knowledge and to frustration and anxiety. When those students who did not fully understand the math being taught in their classes are then affected by summer learning loss, (which some studies have found causes to lose, on average, a month of subject knowledge during the summer), the students risk starting the next year well behind their peers.

Math students who do not fully understand the concepts and assigned work in their classes have more difficulty achieving the grades they desire and may have difficulty in the next year’s tougher classes. Summer is the ideal opportunity to address these deficiencies since during the next school year, students will be expected to keep on top of the current material as well. When students work with the experienced tutors at MATH 1-2-3®, they have the opportunity to review challenging material from the coursework covered during the preceding school year, ask detailed questions, and explore any areas of concern in the prior school year’s math coursework. 

Summer tutoring gives math students the opportunity to get ahead for the upcoming school year. Once students become skilled at the math coursework they did not fully understand during the prior school year, they have the opportunity to begin working on material that will covered during their upcoming math course.  Extra ambitious students can preview enough material to leap a semester or even an entire year ahead of their classmates. Summer is also the perfect time for math students to build their confidence, which sets them up for future success. 

At MATH 1-2-3®, we have been tutoring students of all ages and abilities for over twenty-five years. We know that students have a lot of obligations during the school year, from challenging classes to extracurricular activities to sports to religious studies. During a busy school year, it can be hard for math students and their parents to make time to focus on preparing for upcoming standardized tests. Summer, which tends to be less activity-packed than the academic year, is the ideal time for online, or in-person exam-related tutoring in preparation for the ACT, PSAT, or SAT. There are often summer testing days available as well, which means that students can take the test before the school year begins. It takes that test off of the already-full plates of students and their families. The highly qualified math specialists from MATH 1-2-3® can help students maximize the impact of summer study time by not only teaching them the requisite material, but also how to manage time and approach questions on the PSATs, SATs and ACTs themselves. 

At MATH 1-2-3®, we often hear from parents whose children do well in class and on homework, but have trouble and score low on exams. This may be the result of test-anxiety. We have seen students who “freeze up” when it comes to demonstrating what they have learned in class and what they have worked on in their homework. We have also seen students who “panic” at the thought of needing, or wanting, to achieve a certain grade. Some math students may overthink aspects of the test, or of certain questions, which may shake their confidence in their abilities. With strong summer tutoring by highly rated, experienced math tutors, students can improve their knowledge base, confidence, test-taking skills and their scores.

Whether math students and their parents are seeing math-based challenges, or opportunities, this summer, the experienced math tutors at MATH 1-2-3® are available to help. Our experienced math tutors can help fill in learning gaps, build students’ confidence, supplement prior coursework, motivate struggling students, enrich advanced students, and help all students focus on building skills and confidence. Call us at 1-888-MATH-123 to make the most of the summer!