10 Tips to Ensure Success in Maths

What can you do to be successful in Maths?

 Ask Questions.  Keep asking until you really understand. Try to make your questions specific …. Rather than “I just don’t get it” to which the teacher can only go back over what they’ve just said and the result will be that you still “don’t get it”, try to explain what line of the solution you don’t follow, or what word you don’t understand or try to link it to something.

Be organised. Keep your notes labelled. Use a black or a blue pen to write. Red pen for headings. Use a margin. Stick your worksheets in your books. Keep a folder for review sheets and tests. Set your work out neatly. Make sure your work is marked.

Create an organised deskspace. Like not on your bed … or on the floor!


Study with a friend or create a study group or a study network.  Organise to do your review sheet together or go to Maths help together. It might be once a week when you get together, it might be on the phone. Have someone who can help you when you need it. If you are away, find out what you’ve missed and complete the exercises.


Get rid of distractions. Turn Facebook off for an hour. Turn the radio off. Get rid of the boyfriend… Step away from distractions… Whatever they are for you…. Set yourself a time limit and get the work done.

 Maths is learned by doing. Don’t spend all your allocated time writing notes out. Do a chapter review. Do a chapter review from another textbook. Do your review sheets. Do a past paper.


Everyone needs help at some point. Know when to ask for help. You control the help you get. Maths Help is available. If there is a type of problem you find difficult, keep practising it. Get more problems and keep at it.


Do your homework. Behind every genius is a kid who did their homework on time!


Did I say do your homework! Don’t cram for those tests the night before. Do your homework and you can sleep calmly knowing you have done the work.


Believe in yourself and NEVER, EVER give up!!!



I’d also like you to challenge the stereotypes you set for yourself in this subject…. Stereotypes like “My parents were never good in Maths, so I won’t be either”… like “I’m much better at English, Maths just isn’t my thing”… like “I just don’t like Maths” . More about that later.

Finally Saint Louis University publishes some ideas about how to be successful in Maths. In particular there are some good ideas on how to go about solving problems in Maths.

What do you think it takes to be successful in Maths?

Grow your brain

brainI have talked a little about what you can do to be successful in Maths.

Larry Ferlazzo has written a very positive and motivating article entitled Now I know my brain is growing when I read every night. Its about getting students to realise that they are not just born with innate intelligence. That in fact the brain is like a muscle and that it must be exercised to grow.    
I also love the visual analogy used  in Ms Mercers blog Which do you think your brain and intelligence is?  Grass or Glass.
Image: ‘BrainSpot