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Suggestions for DD 7th grade-flunking tests, acing lessons

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Help! My DD 13 is having struggles, particularly with math and science. She gets distracted while doing the lessons, and is not very interested in the material. But when she answers the problems, she usually gets most of them correct. When she is stumped she tells me. With math, since we use TT, I usually suggest she watch the lesson CD. She is not fond of it. She dislikes his boring voice and gets distracted. She has been averaging 98% correct when doing the problems for each lesson, then today I gave her a chapter test. She took hours with it. I kept trying to make helpful suggestions like: go take an exercise break, try not to overthink it (she often does this), or how 'bout we move on to reading and come back to it? Nope, she wouldn't do any of that. I finally made her quit when it was 2 p.m. (and math is only our 2nd subject!). She did not do at least 5 of the problems and missed several others. She made a 42%!


Now what? Have any of you faced this and what did you do? Last year and previous I rarely tested and did not keep grades on a regular basis. I am using Sonlight this year and wanted to be more structured with her schooling specifically because she seemed to desire more structure and wanted to be graded.


Do I go back and remedialize on anything she missed on the test? Do I ignore it? Do I focus purely on test-taking strategies? And how would I go about doing that?


On science, she seems a little bored and distracted but also seems to have trouble keeping the terms and concepts in her head for more than a day or two. She feels she is a visual learner, but we haven't tested for that. Any ideas?



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That is really strange. You need to go back and review her work to see if she is making miscalculations or if it is a retention issue.


If it is a retention issue then she needs to study before she takes her chapter test. I am not familiar with TT, but with our math program they do a chapter review before the test. We use the chapter review as a study guide. There are usually a few concepts that need to be reviewed or memorized before the chapter test.


If it is a miscalculation issue then I would have her correct her errors and start drilling her on basic math facts daily. I don't think you need to redo the chapter in that case.


For science we use BJU and I have found that many of the questions on the chapter tests stem from the vocabulary words. I enter my kids vocab words in Quizlet.com, and let them play games with the words. By the time they take their chapter test they know all their vocab words and study by going over their reading notes and study guides.


Good luck!

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I would try an experiment. Without telling her the source, I would give her chunks of the test (however many problems would be in a usual lesson). I would have her hand that amount in. And I would grade it. Then the next day give her another chunk etc. I would do this to see if it really is a retention problem (that she understands the material that she studied most recently and forgot the material she studied at the beginning of the chapter) or if it could be test anxiety (that she gets so uptight at the LONG test that she just freezes).

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