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What Your Student Needs When They Say: “I Don’t Understand What the Teacher Is Saying”


A common complaint heard from students is “I don’t understand what the teacher is saying” or “the teacher just doesn’t explain things well.” Is it that their teacher doesn’t explain the concept well? Generally, no. Instead what usually happens is that teachers have to lecture a class of students, and as such, they pick a general teaching strategy that should apply to most students. There just isn’t the time or means to individualize the instruction to each student. As such, a provided explanation may just not click with a student.

For most math topics and concepts, there are usually two to three—if not more—different popular approaches or explanations. Take factoring quadratic equations as an example: in the bay area schools, we have seen a plethora of factoring strategies including “x” method, box method, guess-and-check, factoring by grouping, etc. Students ultimately prefer one approach over the others, but what if that strategy was not the one taught by their teacher?

A one-on-one tutoring setting allows us to individualize the learning process and identify if a method of explanation didn’t connect with a student. We can then adapt and try new approaches to find one that clicks and helps students find that satisfying “aha” moment! Ready to give 1-on-1 customized tutoring a try? Call us today!

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