Many students who develop struggles in mathematics often blame the subject as being too abstract, or nonconcrete. However, their struggles are often the result of a few main problems. It is difficult to keep up with each new topic if a student falls behind on one topic. It is extremely important for each student to stay on top of each lesson to ensure that he or she will not fall below his or her expected achievement in the classroom. Without knowledge of previous lessons, students are unable to apply individual steps to new, more difficult math problems.
Other problems can cause struggles in math as well. According to Pbs.org, “Students can have problems with language, organization, and visualization, which can lead to difficulties anywhere from learning multi-step methods and word problems, to understanding directions”. Also, to keep the math interesting students should always be assigned different concepts as they gain more experience and knowledge in math. When students are given repetitive material they become exceedingly uninterested and only practice steps rather than learn concepts, which lessens their achievement abilities. Then when new material is presented in a way that requires unscripted steps, it does not connect with their ability level.
According to Education.com, “Mathematics instruction must provide many opportunities for concept building, relevant challenging questions, problem solving, reasoning, and connections within the curriculum and real-world situations”. It is also essential for students to be aware that memorization is not the key to learning how to solve math problems, but rather identifying and recollecting concepts and connections. Difficulties in math can be prevented or improved by focusing more on students’ weak points, perfecting computational errors, and helping them comprehend specific math relationships.