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Help with Algebra

Education Expert Advice from Peggy Gisler, Ed.S. and Marge Eberts, Ed.S.

Q: I don't understand algebra at all. My child is doing algebra now, and I can't help her. This is a difficult task for me. Could you please recommend some resources I can use to help her?

A: Doing well in algebra is essential. Your daughter will need to pass algebra in order to take geometry and be admitted to most four-year colleges. She will also need a solid knowledge of algebra to do well on college admissions tests and even to pass a high-school exit exam if your state has one.

Your daughter's first line of help should be her classroom teacher. Many algebra teachers offer special help sessions before and after school. Also, high schools often have student tutors who can be a great help in mastering algebra.

It could be helpful for your daughter to do algebra homework with her friends if they truly work together on solving problems rather than having one student just do the problems for all of them. Having a tutor or going to a learning center can also provide solid help in mastering algebra. Also, is there another family member or even a neighbor who could help your daughter?

It is now almost the end of the school year and helping her will be tricky because in algebra each new topic builds upon previously learned topics. If your daughter has not truly mastered algebra, time should really be spent on doing so this summer. She could simply retake algebra in summer school. Or you could have an experienced tutor help her or have her go to a learning center.

More on: Expert Advice

Peggy Gisler and Marge Eberts are experienced teachers who have more than 60 educational publications to their credit. They began writing books together in 1979. Careers for Bookworms was a Book-of-the-Month Club paperback selection, and Pancakes, Crackers, and Pizza received recognition from the Children's Reading Roundtable. Gisler and Eberts taught in classrooms from kindergarten through graduate school. Both have been supervisors at the Butler University Reading Center.


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