Why do children find maths so hard?


Why do kids find learning maths so hard?

This is a question that is often asked by parents who are seeking help for their children when they approach Tutor My Kids for home tuition in Cambridge, Ely or Newmarket areas.

Learning maths is like building a wall.

Strong foundations are essential to ensure learning has a secure base to build upon. Children often struggle with maths because the foundations are not in place. This might be because key topics were covered when they were ill or because they simply didn’t ‘get it’ first time around. 

e.g Your child needs to understand that 2 x 7 really means repeatedly add 2, seven times 2+2+2+2+2+2+2. Without this basic knowledge they can struggle with times tables, working out areas and other more complex maths.

1-2-1 home tutoring is perfect for situations like this because it can very quickly address specific gaps in knowledge which can then put your child back on track for learning maths well and enjoying it again. 12 sessions with a Tutor My Kids home tutor in Cambridge, Ely or Newmarket can often be all that’s needed for your child to regain their maths confidence.

How can I help at home?

I’m a great fan of ‘kitchen table maths’. Simple maths games and puzzles to stretch your children when they’re least expecting it. 

e.g. We were planning a trip to the cinema recently whilst visiting my sister. I set my 13 year old the task of working out the cheapest option between two cinemas for 3 adults and 2 children. He researched the prices online – taking into account that one cinema charged a ‘teen’ rate, the other a child rate. Then he had to take into account that one cinema had a 10% discount if booked online. 

We got an answer to our problem and he practised  his applying maths and problem solving skills. Win win!

Please see our other blogs and  also our regular column in ‘Primary Times’ in Cambridgeshire.

Primary aged boys who are ‘reluctant’ writers

At Tutor My Kids, we provide home tutors in Cambridge, Ely and Newmarket. 

We’ve noticed a particular need for primary aged boys needing a home tutor in Cambridgeshire who are ‘reluctant writers’. They tend to be academically ahead in reading and numeracy (maths) but below expectations in writing. There are several causes.

In some cases it’s down to lack of confidence; maybe their work has been harshly criticised in the past. Sometimes it’s a lack of understanding of how to construct a sentence in order to make writing more advanced. Connectives or conjunctions are one way to make writing more sophisticated by joining 2 short sentences into 1 longer one. e.g. The book was interesting. It had lots of description in it.  becomes… The book was interesting as it had lots of description in it. Why do children, especially boys, find this hard?

Schools have such a lot to fit in and many boys struggle to manage to take on board multiple sets of instructions. Teaching boys techniques to remember this and other tips can make a huge difference to their writing and their levels in school.

Parents often start to worry about their son’s writing as year 4 or 5 advances and the prospect of SATs or common entrance exams approaching start to bring the discrepancy of their levels to their attention. It’s often at this time that Tutor My Kids are called and asked to provide a home tutor in Cambridge, Ely or Newmarket to help to raise the levels of their son’s writing to match that of their reading and numeracy.

If you have concerns over your child’s learning and would like a free consultation to discuss their needs and the prospect of home tuition, please get in touch with Rachel at Tutor My Kids.  

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