In a busy classroom, full of distractions, children can sometimes miss important information.
As the class progresses, children can get left behind, afraid to ask for help. These gaps in learning can have long-lasting effects, especially in English and maths.
Storm McGrath, CEO at Kip McGrath Education Centres, explains the effect on students long-term. “If a student skips some of the building blocks in the learning process, they struggle to get the solid foundations they need for high school, tertiary education, and beyond. Early intervention is key”.
Children silently struggling in class can begin to show signs of unease at home, which may be difficult for parents to pinpoint. Parents might see changes in mood, self-esteem, or academic results. Parents noticing the signs are then faced with three options: hope that the child improves on their own, attempt to teach the child at home, or seek support from a professional tutor.
Unlike ‘homework help’, professional tutoring is highly focused teaching that can identify gaps in learning. Qualified tutors have the time and skills to teach a student the concepts they have missed before helping them catch up and keep up in class.
McGrath explains, “through this process, students become more confident, not only in class but within themselves. They begin to enjoy learning again.”
Signs your child may be struggling with schoolwork might include:
- Reluctance to Discuss Schoolwork
If your child becomes fidgety, frustrated, or changes the subject when asked direct questions about a class subject, this may be cause for concern. While a child who enjoys learning is happy to discuss school, a child struggling in class may find it uncomfortable to talk about. By asking softer questions, actively listening, and making your child feel comfortable enough to open up, you will gain more insight into the challenges they might be facing.
- Changes in Behaviour or Mood
While your child is still learning how to manage emotions and develop self-control, it is important to observe when flare ups occur. Regular, inexplicable changes in mood around school related activities are a red flag. If your child was previously an independent learner then suddenly becomes increasingly needy or frustrated about homework, it may be a sign he or she is overwhelmed.
- Taking Excessive Amounts of Time to Complete Homework
Most parents will experience push-back from their child about homework at some point. If it is persistent, it can be a problem. If your child has been prescribed 15 minutes of homework each night by his or her teacher but they need 60 minutes to complete the tasks, this should be a signal to you that they are struggling with the work. Speak to your teacher to confirm your instincts that something may be amiss or contact a professional tutoring service like Kip McGrath Education Centres for a free learning assessment.
- Disruptive in Class
Students struggling with learning gaps might respond to being overwhelmed by being disruptive in class. Children and teens often find it difficult to admit they are uncomfortable with the workload in front of them, especially when they see their classmates coping when they feel overloaded. They may react with frustration, anger, or emotional outbursts. If your child is usually well-behaved and has been recently acting out, it is important to discuss their learning and behaviour with a trusted teacher.
- Low Grades or Teacher Concern
While it may seem obvious, some parents avoid confirming the evidence provided to them that their child is in fact, falling behind. If a student has missed key concepts and is falling behind in class, it can have a compounding effect; the longer it takes for a parent to take action, the harder it becomes for the child to catch up with his or her peers.
If your child is presenting signs of frustration at homework time, changes in behaviour, avoidance about schoolwork or even admits they simply “don’t get it”, take action by reaching out for help.
Kip McGrath Education Centres offer free English and maths assessments for school aged students, conducted by qualified teachers. The assessment provides a true snapshot of the student’s current abilities as well as identifying any learning gaps. A tailored learning programme is developed for each child specific to their needs to help them catch up and keep up in class.
The global Kip McGrath network delivers its proven methodology to over 50,000 students each week. The method focuses on quality teaching in a small group setting, while providing one-to-one attention either in centre or online.
To book a free assessment at one of Kip McGrath’s 260+ locations or online, visit www.kipmcgrath.co.uk.