The mission of Joel P. Jensen Middle School is to advance each student's academic and personal development.
HELP - My Student is Struggling in Math...What Can I Do?
In most schools across the country, math tends to be the most difficult subject for students. Because math generally builds on concepts, if one concept is missed or not understood by a student, it is tough for that student to grasp new concepts. At Joel P. Jensen Middle School we would like to offer several ideas to parents and students regarding what to do if a student is struggling in math. These are in no particular order, but are potential solutions to the math struggle dilemma:
a) After school one-on-one help. Math teachers are here after school for at least 30 minutes each day, and look forward to helping students one-on-one.
b) Utilize any math teacher. Any math teacher is willing to help. If your student struggles to understand one teacher's way of explaining things, another math teacher may be able to explain things in a different way.
c) RTI time. RTI (Response to Intervention) time is available to students most Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays. Math teachers will re-teach concepts and can meet with students individually to help them. There are several others in each classroom, so this is not the most effective time for one-on-one time with teachers.
d) NJHS tutors. National Junior Honor Society students are interested in volunteering. Many are great at math and may be able to explain things on a student level that may be easier to comprehend for struggling students. If you would like an NJHS student to help your student, please contact Ms. Walton or Mr. Brodrick, who are the NJHS advisors. (firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com)
e) Use internet resources. Parents, it has been years since you have done this level of math. Let technology be your best friend. Have your student get on the internet and type in the subject of their assignment. There are thousands of videos explaining these math principles just waiting to be accessed. One of our favorites is Khan Academy on Youtube. Try it out!
f) Ascend Math. The administration and School Community Council at JPJMS have spent thousands of dollars on math software called Ascend math. We currently have 75 licenses, but are willing to purchase more if the need and interest exists. Ascend Math will assess where the "holes" are and will assign units for students to complete to fill those holes. A powerful tool with a great track record of success here at JPJMS! We ask that students come into our Learning Lab at least one day a week after school Mondays through Thursdays for an hour, or from 8:30 until 9:15 Friday mornings to use this tool. It can also be accessed from home! To have your student use one of our licenses, please call the main office and have them transfer your call to our Learning Lab to speak to one of our aides.
In addition, our math teachers ask that you have your student attend each and every day, if possible. We notice that, generally speaking, the students most behind in math are those that miss school regularly. A rule of thumb is to not allow your student to miss school more than 10 days in a school year, which equals to 2.5 days per quarter. We recognize that most students will miss a few days each year, but when they do, they must be prepared to spend more time with their teachers to receive the instruction that they missed. Students should be prepared to spend more time in RTI and after school when they return to school to get caught up.
There are other ways to receive help in math, but one thing that our math teachers emphasize is to communicate with them. By leaving them a message to call or through an e-mail, they are here and dedicated to helping your student succeed.