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Q&A #1708


Helping low achievers

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From: ---
To: Teacher2Teacher Service
Date: Jun 29, 1999 at 14:54:41
Subject: Helping low achievers

Our daughter has had difficulty with mathematics since early elementary school. It is a little like Mr. Holland's Opus for us, because my husband and I are both mathematics majors, certified to teach high school math. She has no difficulty with English and reading. She scored a 27 in English, 26 in Reading on her ACT recently. However, she only scored a 16 in math. This correlates perfectly with her Stanford Achievement Test scores where she would consistently score in the 99th percentile in Reading and the 33rd percentile in math. I went to her school with my concerns; they brushed me off repeatedly, saying, "We do not want to label her as Special Education student." With our help, she has been able to score a C in Algebra I and a B in Geometry (she could memorize those theorems like nobody's business). But Dear Teacher2Teacher, Our daughter has had difficulty with math since early elementary school. It's a little like Mr. Holland's Opus for us, because my husband and I are both math majors, certified to teach high school math. She has no difficulty with English and reading. She made a 27 in English, 26 in Reading on her ACT recently. She made a 16 in math. This correlates perfectly with her Stanford Achievement Test scores where she would consistently score in the 99th percentile in Reading and the 33rd percentile in math. I went to her school with my concerns; they brushed me off repeatedly, saying, "We do not want to label her as a Special Education student" With our help, she scored a C in Algebra I and a B in Geometry (she could memorize those theorems like nobody's business). The first semester of this year, she scored a D in Algebra II and failed the second semester. The only reason we let her take Algebra II was that she will be required to take College Algebra in college. Later on, she wants to be a first grade teacher. My question is this: Have special learning problems been identified for students who have difficulty in mathematics, and are there specific teaching strategies that can be used to help these low achievers? I am a very capable teacher, but I have not had proper preparation to help with these kinds of problems. Than

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