Secrets of Last Minute Revision before Exams

By Sampada Bidikar,

When exams knock on your door, you have to study more and more. When there’s hardly any time left, and you haven’t done your revision yet. Here’s a solution! Read over to find out the quickest way of revising before your exams.

That time of the year is upon us, the time of revisions, preparations and tensions. Exams are just around the corner and everyone is busy studying for them. Each one of us has our own way of studying. Some will make timetables, some might randomly read a chapter they find most difficult and then the read the easy ones, or vice versa. Few would like to study with a buddy. Whatever the method, we all have one goal, and that is to do well in the exams.

With all this preparation, there is always a last minute thing to be done. It’s always there. Just before entering the exam hall, you would want to take a final look at the formulae, revise an important concept, and discuss some queries with your friends.

And more often than not, this last minute revision helps. With a proper last minute revision you enter the exam hall with confidence.

When you look at the question paper, you are confident about some questions and answer them well, as you had just revised them. But there might also be a few, for which you are unable to recollect the formula or the answer and you curse yourself for not taking a look at it once more. Has this ever happened to you?  I am sure it has happened to most of us, and you are smiling to yourself thinking how true this is.

Most of us prepare for this last minute revision beforehand. We write down important formulae in a sheet of paper or we write down the page number of the concepts we want to take a look at one more time, we make mind maps, charts, tables, etc. All these things definitely help us to do well.

I would like to suggest another sure shot method to help you with your studies and make your life easier: The Smart Learning Cards from Learnhive. The perfect tool to help you revise better! These sets of card for each subject will cover all the chapters and concepts of your syllabus.  These concise, colourful handy cards have concepts arranged in different formats like mind maps, tables, flowcharts, graphs to help you understand and remember well. Each card is designed carefully by Subject matter experts, keeping in mind the best way to explain a concept, so that it helps the child understand better. You have everything you need in these cards, the definitions, formulae, diagrams, solved problems, procedures, steps and explanation of concepts.

                                    Math Concept Sample Smart Card

                                  English Grammar Sample Smart Card

 

                  Science Concept Sample Smart Card

These are powerful visualization tools that will definitely help you with your studies. So go ahead try them. They are freely available right now @ http://player.learnhive.net/#!/search/lessons/summary

Also pocket your own copy of these cards at http://www.learnhive.net/store/SmartLearningCards to help you with your last minute preparation, and to give you the confidence to crack the exams.

About the Author:

Sampada Bidikar (sampada.bidikar@learnhive.net) is the Team Lead – Content Development at Learnhive Education Pvt. Ltd. She has over 5 years of experience in Information technology and over a year experience in Training and development; has worked in the Health care and Power domain at Siemens Information systems Ltd. She has a Bachelors degree in Information Science. Having a passion for training and development, she did her Advanced Diploma in Training and Development and has worked as a trainer and content developer at Oscar Murphy International.

About Learnhive: 

Learnhive is a leading provider of technology based learning solutions for K-12 students, parents, and tutors. Our goal is to make curriculum based learning more effective and fun. We specialize in providing after school learning solutions for students and parents. Our flagship product, Personal Concept Tutor™ gives students the flexibility to learn concepts at their own pace using a wide variety of materials and resources suited for their individual needs. Our technology is compatible with multiple device formats such as desktops, laptops, tablets and smart phones to make learning more fun, interactive and available to students anywhere and at any time. Signup for free to access the learning materials (lessons and exercises).

10 Ways to Enhance Memory for Children!

By Crystal Maria Andrade,

You may wonder how you manage to remember information for a test. Parents often worry how well their children are learning and whether schools are meeting educational standards. Parents and teachers have big dreams that their children and students should become successful in their life. But, whether you succeed or not, all depends on this one aspect: your mind.  Your mind matters and what matters more is your memory. Memory has three stages which include sensory information (replica of what you see and hear/ also called encoding), short-term memory (active/working memory also called storage) and long-term memory (permanent memory/retrieval). Learning is the outcome of memory and learning depends on how well you have processed the information. As ability to recall information is needed for students, the information they learn should be passed on from the short term memory to long term memory in order to retain information during exams, tests or whenever required.

Photo Credit: http://www.sxc.hu/photo/1056131

Here are some tips for learning that will enhance your ability to recall information and achieve excellent results:

How much is too much:  There’s a need to understand the span of attention of students and their capacity to store information in their working memory. It is not educationally sound to impose on the students huge amount of information for long period of time, this will leave them confused and clueless. Instead, giving them limited information for study and helping them to learn with vigour will aid in retaining the information for a longer period of time.

1. Adding Emotion: Anything taught with the element of emotion will be easily retained in our memory. This means students are likely to recall information that induces an emotional response. Teachers can use this tactic in English, History and Science classes. For example: if the lesson is on galaxy, the teacher can induce emotions in the students by showing them videos or pictures of the galaxy and stars.

2. Reading, writing and recollecting: Anything which is read out loudly will enhance your retention than just reading it. Writing down the important points or facts will help in retention and will be useful while studying for exams. Recollecting is the ability to retain the information after reading and writing. If you have encoded the information efficiently then you will be able to retrieve the information.

4. Rehearsal: It is said ‘Practice makes a man perfect’, therefore, rehearsing information till you master any concept is very important. Rehearsal improves your memory and gets etched onto your long-term memory. Also, rehearsing the right information is essential because unlearning the inaccurate information which is passed on to the long-term memory will be a challenging task. Hence, practice over time and ace your exams without cramming all information in one night.

5. Give meaning: If there is any subject which has many names, dates and figures; then it is always better to associate these facts with something. Giving meaning to meaningless concepts or information through ways such as poems, mnemonics, music and rhythm will improve retention of this information for future use. Nevertheless, you can use an aid such as chunking which plays a significant role in enhancing the short term memory transfer to long term memory. Chunking numbers, colours or aspects in groups helps in remembering and learning the concepts faster.

6. Make connections: It is vital to make connections or associations between the new information and the previously learnt information. The higher the number of associations made, the more chances of retaining that information easily and this in turn induces your memory power through which you can retrace the information easily.

7. Avoid distractions: While studying, choose a quiet and peaceful environment, comfortable seating and table, bright light, proper ventilation and avoid distracting things around you. Here, distracting elements include anything that diverts your attention, for instance: video games, T.V., music player, phones, and the like. While studying, if distraction persists then encoding the information suffers leading to forgetting. Hence, for encoding to be efficient you shouldn’t give ways to distraction instead concentrate and give maximum attention to avoid the inability to retrieve information.

8. Get some rest: Take a break between learnings. You have heard that ‘All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy’, so take breaks after few hours of studying and relax your mind. Not only breaks but physical exercise and sound sleep strengthens your ability to retain the information. Sleep is very crucial to boost your memory. Sleep helps us learn new information and pass the information to the long-term memory. However, for most of the problems including imbalance of mind and body, stress, preparing for exams- the best prescription commonly given is get some sleep! So, say goodbye to cramming all night.

9. Teach others to help you revise better: Whatever you have learnt will be useful when you share that knowledge to another person. So, one of the best ways to learn is to teach what you’ve learnt to another person. This is the reason why teachers have mastered the concepts they teach because they have to teach the same lessons and concepts to many batches in school. Adding to this, if the concepts are thought using real life stories and examples or experiments, then the students are likely to remember them for life because anything visual stimulates our attention and learning takes place faster.

10. Questioning enhances learning: Asking questions like why, how, what helps in learning concepts well because here the reasoning, thinking and analysis is involved. Anything which triggers our mental processors helps in learning the concepts faster and better. Finding answers to these questions makes memory work out as all the mental processors are involved making the memory charged and active. Besides, another way to ask question is by taking the quizzes or tests which will help in reasoning and in a way enhance your memory power. Here, the end process will be getting feedback from the tests which plays a vital role in knowing what is right and what is wrong. All this collectively heightens your memory power because your brain is at its maximum functionality.

These are the 10 ways which will help you learn efficiently and remember information so that they can be retrieved whenever in need. If these procedures are followed anyone can learn anything quickly and retrace the information efficiently. However, all these procedures have to be followed in a systematic way and one shouldn’t end up multi-tasking. The reason is because our brain processes and stores the information systematically. This is not practiced then certain glitches can occur in the process of learning which will lead to forgetting. Now, you know that the old myths of rote learning don’t work. These guidelines will help students as it will help them reason and learn using the above methods which will have a great impact on the way they can retrieve information whenever asked for. Therefore, retention depends on how well you make use of these sure-fire ways to become more effective learner by simply enhancing your memory power for excellent results. Ultimately, don’t forget that remembering is a skill that takes lot of practice and learning is a life-long process and has to go on for our existence on earth. So, happy learning as memory is like a computer, you need to press Ctrl + S (Save) for all important information, press Backspace for all irrelevant information and press Delete for unused/useless information. Now F5 (Refresh) your mind and practice these useful methods.

About the Author:

Crystal Maria Andrade is a Content Developer at Learnhive. Nature, travelling, music, movies and fun interests her. She has a profound passion for writing. She believes making the most out of every opportunity. Her hobbies include collecting quotes, learning new words and playing crosswords and puzzles. She’s a fun-lover and is surrounded by fun-loving people. Spreading happiness is her mantra.

About Learnhive: 

Learnhive is a leading provider of technology based learning solutions for K-12 students, parents, and tutors. Our goal is to make curriculum based learning more effective and fun. We specialize in providing after school learning solutions for students and parents. Our flagship product, Personal Concept Tutor™ gives students the flexibility to learn concepts at their own pace using a wide variety of materials and resources suited for their individual needs. Our technology is compatible with multiple device formats such as desktops, laptops, tablets and smart phones to make learning more fun, interactive and available to students anywhere and at anytime. Signup for free to access the learning materials (lessons and exercises).

 

Are you giving enough blended learning for your child?

By Jenna Murdoch,

Most of the parents feel that in spite of sending their child to tuition and school, the classroom learning has not made much of an impact on the child. The reason could be that the child has not understood the concepts or that they maybe exceptionally talented that they are bored of learning the concepts. This is due to being exposed to only classroom learning and not practical knowledge. Find out what blending learning is all about and how it will have a positive impact on your child’s learning.

Within the modern school system, students are arranged primarily by age rather than by ability. This originated with the industrial model of schools, where students were all trained in the same way to prepare them to take the place of another on the assembly line and are moved through the school years in lock step. Of course, we are no longer in the industrial age – we live in a knowledge economy where not everyone is expected to be on the same path, yet still, students are put in classrooms without full regard to where they stand on the learning spectrum.

Photo Credit: http://www.sxc.hu/photo/1109761

Pitfalls in levelled classrooms

In order to adapt to the new economy, many schools have attempted to address students of differing abilities by creating leveled classes and introducing opportunities for more advanced students such as Advanced Placement and International Baccalaureate programs. Further, teachers have attempted to design more “modern” curricula that deviate from the traditional industrial model by using new in-class methods that encourage collaboration and project-based learning. However, even within these leveled classrooms, there is considerable variance in students’ level of comfort with coursework – instructors still have to appeal to the most common denominator in order to address the largest audience possible. As a result, students who have trouble keeping up may give up on understanding the material while students who are exceptionally talented in a certain subject may become bored or even discouraged.

Online education aids practice and preparation

In many subjects, online education may be a way for students who don’t fit into the common denominator to complement in-class instruction. Online education is a particularly effective complement to work in mathematics, since mathematical reasoning involves practice and objective problem solving. Students who are having a hard time keeping up with their classmates can do online practice problems until they have a better handle on the material or watch tutorials that take them step-by-step through the process of solving certain types of problems. Learners who are ahead of most of their peers can use online education as a way to solve more challenging problems that can give them a leg up in preparing for future coursework and can even help get them prepared for the level of mathematical reasoning that is expected of students applying to top universities.

Optimizing online learning platform

Though online instruction can be an excellent complement for classroom materials, many parents and students have a hard time deciding what features to look for when attempting to choose an online learning platform. Many online education providers have extremely limited materials or demonstrate the same generalized approach that drives students to online resources in the first place. In order to maximize the benefits of complementary online education, parents and students should look for platforms that have broad content and have adaptive resources that track a learner’s progress and generate additional materials based on the user’s demonstrated performance.

Blending in-class and online instruction

Blending in-class instruction with adaptive online complementary resources can allow students to move at their own pace and can empower them in the classroom.

About the Author:

Jenna Murdoch is a student at Barnard College of Columbia University in New York City. She is an instructional technologist who is interested in evolving learning models.

About Learnhive: 

Learnhive is a leading provider of technology based learning solutions for K-12 students, parents, and tutors. Our goal is to make curriculum based learning more effective and fun. We specialize in providing after school learning solutions for students and parents. Our flagship product, Personal Concept Tutor™ gives students the flexibility to learn concepts at their own pace using a wide variety of materials and resources suited for their individual needs. Our technology is compatible with multiple device formats such as desktops, laptops, tablets and smart phones to make learning more fun, interactive and available to students anywhere and at anytime. Signup for free to access the learning materials (lessons and exercises).

Secrets of Learning!

By Crystal Maria Andrade,

You may be curious as to know how humans learn. The ability to create new memories, store them for a longer period of time and recall them when they are needed is something marvelous about human memory. But, how parents and teachers think about learning taking place in children is erroneous. Let’s look at what memory has in store for us. 

Learning is a continuous process which lasts life-long in humans. It begins right when the baby is in the womb till we die. There has been lot of research done as to how learning takes place in humans. Today, we find parents worrying that their children do not do well in their studies and some children find it difficult to grasp concepts and lag behind while others are fast learners and get bored or impatient as they learn quite faster than the others and don’t fit into their peer groups. Why do you think this happens? Do we not know that each individual differs from the other even in terms of learning and memory?

Learning is different for each individual because we learn in different places and situations. Learning depends on whether it is formal or informal. People learn through different ways like touch, auditory, visual, behavior, attention, rote memorization, observing, and perceptions and so on. Moreover, we learn through variety of formats like multimedia, books, lectures and the like. Our learning is influenced by our culture, family, social status, genetic traits, developmental ability and age. Thus, learning is unique to each individual. Furthermore, one needs to know that learning and memory are interdependent. Learning takes place because of memory and without memory you cannot learn.

Photo Credit: http://www.sxc.hu/photo/717339

Misconceptions about learning

The fact that everybody needs to know about how learning takes place is crucial in determining better results and how to overcome some common prejudices. Learning is not as simple as we think and it is much more than cramming. Teachers and parents make their students and children follow stringent studying habits without understanding the aspect of how learning takes place in children or humans in general. Learning is the result of memory and the process of learning depends on how the information in processed in the stages of our memory. The stages that makes memory is due to encoding, storing and retrieval. If we have learnt something then it is because there is a relative permanent change which has taken place in our behavior, mental processors and our perceptions about the concepts which is solely due to the result of our experience.

Stages of memory

What everybody needs to know is how the information is processed in our memory and how learning occurs in humans. The stages are as follows:

Stage 1: This is the first stage of memory and the information which we have perceived or seen is encoded for a brief period of time i.e. few seconds. This information must be either transferred immediately to short-term memory or else it is liable to be erased or ceased. This stage is called sensory information.

Stage 2: The second stage of memory lasts for 20 to 30 seconds. Some selective sensory information which is stored in our active memory or conscious mind is called as short-term memory. Most of the short-term memories are quickly forgotten, to locate them for future reference, one has to attend to this information so that this information moves to the next stage.

Stage 3: The final stage of memory refers to information which lies deep in our unconscious and can be retrieved whenever desired. It’s a stage where old information is replaced with new and the information stored here can be retrieved for a lifetime. It plays a vital role in learning without which our purpose wouldn’t be served. This stage is called long term memory. Information stored here is permanent.

Memory like music

Memory can be compared to music on your phone. If you watch a YouTube music video then it would be a sensory information for your phone. If you download a song and if it is in your playlist then it would be short term memory. Once the new songs are added, the old ones will be automatically moved from the playlist. If you keep playing the new songs many times, they will be on your phone as most played. Likewise, this is how memory works. The more you rehearse any information, the more you will be able to retrieve or recall the information later.

Goodbye to cramming

Now that you know how memory works and how learning takes place, you can get rid of your traditional ways of teaching or studying and say goodbye to all your prejudices about learning.  Cramming or rote learning entire night before the day of exam is not the right way to study. Doing this will only result in mental block or forgetting. Every time you sit for studying, remember that rehearsing the information you have learnt is very essential for learning to take place. This indicates that revising helps in recalling the information accurately. Only when the information is rehearsed in the short term memory, it will be transferred to the long term memory. When this happens we know that learning has taken place. Hence, practice is important so that your memory knows that this repeated information has a purpose and will be retrieved whenever you need it. So, your memory is like a field. The more you sow, the more you shall reap. Consequently, make your memory your good friend, as you’ll need its help for lifelong whenever needed.

About the Author:

Crystal Maria Andrade is a Content Developer at Learnhive. Nature, travelling, music, movies and fun interests her. She has a profound passion for writing. She believes making the most out of every opportunity. Her hobbies include collecting quotes, learning new words and playing crosswords and puzzles. She’s a fun-lover and is surrounded by fun-loving people. Spreading happiness is her mantra.

About Learnhive: 

Learnhive is a leading provider of technology based learning solutions for K-12 students, parents, and tutors. Our goal is to make curriculum based learning more effective and fun. We specialize in providing after school learning solutions for students and parents. Our flagship product, Personal Concept Tutor™ gives students the flexibility to learn concepts at their own pace using a wide variety of materials and resources suited for their individual needs. Our technology is compatible with multiple device formats such as desktops, laptops, tablets and smart phones to make learning more fun, interactive and available to students anywhere and at anytime. Signup for free to access the learning materials (lessons and exercises).

A Five Step Easy Guide to Solving Math Word Problems

By Jayana Desai,

Do you feel that your child is not able to do well in word problems compared to number problems? Do you think that your child finds it difficult to comprehend or understand math word problems? Leave all your apprehensions behind because here’s unveiling the 5 simple steps that will help your child to solve word problems confidently and smartly.

“The essence of mathematics is not to make simple things complicated, but to make complicated things simple.”  — Stan Gudder

Raj collects pencils and stores them in his favourite pencil case. Raj has 26 pencils in his pencil case. He puts 7 more pencils in his case. How many pencils does Raj have in his case?

Photo Credit: http://www.sxc.hu/photo/743218

While some may find math word problems easy and fun to solve, others may actually find them difficult and confusing. Which side of the spectrum does your child fall on when solving these types of problems? To help determine the answer, ask yourself:

Does your child stare endlessly at the word problem with no idea what to do? Does your child rush through the word problem just to get it wrong? Is your child showing signs of frustration or lack of confidence when solving word problems?  If the answers to these questions were a resounding yes, then rest assured. Here are 5 steps children can use to solve math word problems.

Five Step Guide to Solving Math Word Problems:

1. Think

What is the problem asking? (Look for key words to help answer the question)

2.  Figure it out

Choose a strategy you know (i.e. number line to count, double counting, splitting the numbers into parts, counting by tens and ones, child invented strategy, etc.)

3.   Come up with a number scheme

13 + 6 =? ; 16 – 7 =?

4.    Solve the problem

Use the strategy identified in Step 2 to solve the problem

5.    Discuss

Explain your reasoning and approach (i.e. the “whys”)

Now, let’s apply these five steps to the math word problem:

Raj collects pencils and stores them in his favourite pencil case. Raj has 26 pencils in his pencil case. He puts 7 more pencils in his case. How many pencils does Raj have in his case?

  1. Think: The key words “7 more” tell me the number of pencils will be greater than 26. So, to increase the amount I will need to add the two numbers.
  2. Figure it out: Number line to count strategy
  3. Come up with a number scheme: 26 + 7 = ?
  4. Solve the problem:
  5. Discuss: I chose addition because the problem stated there will be “7 more” pencils. This means Raj will have a number greater than 26 pencils. I chose the line strategy to help me add. I started the number line at 26 and I needed to add 7. I know I can skip count by 2’s until I get to six, and then I can add 1 more increment, i.e. 2 + 2 + 2 = 6 +1 = 7. I apply this method to my number line (i.e. 26 + 2 = 28; 28 + 2 = 30; 30 + 2 = 32; 32 + 1 = 33). The total number of pencils in Raj’s pencil case is 33.

That seems simple, right? Well, at first it may seem daunting to a child as anything new does. However, encouraging your child to practice the 5-steps will gradually erase any fears, and rather build self-confidence in solving math word problems.

So, take this time to introduce your child to the 5-step guide of solving word problems, and witness your child swing to the other side of the spectrum; finding math word problems easy and fun to solve!

Now it’s your turn! Does your child apply one, some, or all of these 5 steps when solving math word problems? What strategies does your child use when solving word problems? How do you see the 5-step guide helping your child solve math word problems? Post your burning comment, thought, or question and let’s engage in an open dialogue!

About the Author:

An avid professional in the field of International Education, Jayana Desai hung up her investment banking heels of 13 years to pursue her dream of educating children. She holds a Master’s degree in International Education from New York University, Steinhardt. She has taught children at the primary grade level in both India and in New York. Her passion for educating children can be seen in the curriculum materials she develops, as well as in her love for teaching yoga to children. Being able to empower children with knowledge through positive learning experiences is Jayana’s goal. She would like them to be able to develop their body and mind, while bringing joy to their lives. Prior to her experience in Education, Jayana worked at two prestigious Investment Banks- JP Morgan and Lehman Brothers. She held various leadership positions in managing strategic, global-scale initiatives.

About Learnhive: 

Learnhive is a leading provider of technology based learning solutions for K-12 students, parents, and tutors. Our goal is to make curriculum based learning more effective and fun. We specialize in providing after school learning solutions for students and parents. Our flagship product, Personal Concept Tutor™ gives students the flexibility to learn concepts at their own pace using a wide variety of materials and resources suited for their individual needs. Our technology is compatible with multiple device formats such as desktops, laptops, tablets and smart phones to make learning more fun, interactive and available to students anywhere and at anytime. Signup for free to access the learning materials (lessons and exercises).

Mathematics, why it is more than just 1+1!

By Jayana Desai,

Have you ever felt that math is nothing but numbers, calculations, constructions and formulas?  Have you ever asked yourself how will math help you in anyway or does it play any role in your daily life? If you are still wondering then read further because you’ll be surprised what miracles math can do to you and how it will help you in your academics as well as daily life. 

Photo Credit: http://www.sxc.hu/photo/658665

The only way to learn mathematics is to do mathematics” – Paul Halmos

Why is mastering the core fundamentals of math important? How can learning and practicing math exercises help children strengthen their math skills? How does math help children assess their knowledge?

Answering the whys and hows of mathematics may be as complex as the Merriam-Webster Definition of Mathematics: “The study of the science of numbers and their operations, interrelations, combinations, generalizations, and abstractions and of space configurations and their structure, measurement, transformations, and generalizations.” However, like any mathematical problem, we need to break down the whys and hows to fully understand what is being asked and to reap the benefits of studying math.

Why is mastering the core fundamentals of Math important?

When I think about the core fundamentals of math, I think about addition to determine the sum of two numbers or subtraction to calculate the difference of two numbers. I think about the memorized multiplication facts to simplify repeated addition or the use of division to split parts or groups equally. While these basic math concepts solve math problems, they also teach children basic life skills to be successful in everyday life. This revelation came to me as a teacher while teaching 1st and 2nd grade math. The most important concept I learnt is that math is directly connected to real life. The development of mathematical skills transforms to the development of life skills.

So, let me share the 5 skills that children develop in everyday life while doing math:

Number sense – Through math, children build their knowledge of numbers and their relationships and connections. They also develop the use of numbers in their physical and social worlds.

 Assessing knowledge – The “use what you know” strategy in math is a great example of how children reflect on the knowledge or information they have in their memory, which leads to building off their prior knowledge, and applying their knowledge to interpret, identify, and solve math problems.

Problem solving – Whether it is a simple addition problem or an algebraic equation, math is all about problem solving.

Critical-thinking – Studying math provides children with the opportunity to think critically and creatively to generate strategies that will solve math problems.

Communication – Though discussing math may not be a normal practice, children should be encouraged to share their approach and reasoning when solving math problems.  By talking about their thought processes, children are strengthening their communication skills.

Now take a step outside the classroom and into the real world and you will see that these skills are needed everywhere- at a food store buying groceries, qualifiers for a candidate seeking a job, conversing with a friend about a problem, or a leader guiding the way and making a difference. These skills are the cornerstones to living life.

How can learning and practicing math exercises help children strengthen their math skills?

They say, ‘Practice makes a man perfect’ and this is no different for math. By encouraging children to continuously practice math exercises, children are reinforcing and deepening their learning of mathematical concepts as well as further strengthening their skill set. They are also becoming more comfortable and confident with math and learning to enjoy doing math. Thus, in addition to the above skills, practicing math will:

  • Help children see patterns
  • Build children’s visual representation (i.e. 3 cookies + 1 more cookie = 4 cookies)
  • Lend to making connections with math
  • Support children’s ability to apply basic math skills to complex math concepts (i.e. x + y to y = m x + b)
  • Help children recognize the relationship between math and real life

Therefore, children should make the effort to take a few minutes of their time each day to do math exercises. Doing math will only have a positive impact on their learning of math.

How does Math help children assess their knowledge?

Working out math problems can help children see the progress they are making across a wide-range of skills. Thus, doing math on a regular basis can help children:

  • See their learning of concepts and formulaic procedures evolve
  • Recognize their knowledge of different strategies and appropriately use strategies for problem solving
  • Observe their use of patterns and connections when doing math
  • Check if their answers are reasonable
  • Determine if they are clearly expressing their thought processes and ideas
  • Comprehend the challenges they are facing in learning math

In a nutshell, doing mathematics is pivotal to our daily lives both inside and outside the classroom. Children will cultivate life skills and build self-confidence as well as develop a love for the subject. So, do not put off math any longer – take out a pencil and paper or switch on your computer and start solving math problems!

About the Author:

An avid professional in the field of International Education, Jayana Desai hung up her investment banking heels of 13 years to pursue her dream of educating children. She holds a Master’s degree in International Education from New York University, Steinhardt. She has taught children at the primary grade level in both India and in New York. Her passion for educating children can be seen in the curriculum materials she develops, as well as in her love for teaching yoga to children. Being able to empower children with knowledge through positive learning experiences is Jayana’s goal. She would like them to be able to develop their body and mind, while bringing joy to their lives. Prior to her experience in Education, Jayana worked at two prestigious Investment Banks- JP Morgan and Lehman Brothers. She held various leadership positions in managing strategic, global-scale initiatives.

About Learnhive: 

Learnhive is a leading provider of technology based learning solutions for K-12 students, parents, and tutors. Our goal is to make curriculum based learning more effective and fun. We specialize in providing after school learning solutions for students and parents. Our flagship product, Personal Concept Tutor™ gives students the flexibility to learn concepts at their own pace using a wide variety of materials and resources suited for their individual needs. Our technology is compatible with multiple device formats such as desktops, laptops, tablets and smart phones to make learning more fun, interactive and available to students anywhere and at anytime. Signup for free to access the learning materials (lessons and exercises).

How to choose the right school for your child?

By Captain Unni Krishnan,

Today choosing a school is like choosing a car or a house, very subjective. There is no right or wrong choice. Before you decide how to choose a pre school it is important to understand this segment of education.

Pre-school system

Formal education starts at the age of 6. The segment of the school system that

Photo credit: http://www.sxc.hu/photo/1066433

addresses students less than 6 years of age is called the pre-school.  The formal process of physically going to school starts at an age around 2 years 9 months upwards.

Kindergarten years are an important time in a child’s total development. Early childhood educators, families and members of the community should work together to provide challenging and engaging learning experiences that will build a child’s confidence, encourage them to continue to see learning as both enjoyable and useful, and provide a strong foundation for their future intellectual, physical, and social development.

Teachers in Kindergarten program must plan whole-class instruction, small-group learning, independent learning, and activities in their environment.

There should also be a balance between teacher-initiated and child-initiated activities – times when the teacher guides the children’s learning and times when children are given opportunities to choose activities to demonstrate their knowledge.

In addition to focusing on developing IQ and EQ, learning activities must develop Social quotient in children. The Pre School education has 2 well-known systems of delivery the Kindergarten and the Montessori.  Kindergarten is a drop down from the conventional system, has a larger leaning towards reading and writing and hence is followed in most regular schools. Montessori is learning by doing method and followed in specialist pre schools.

As there is a re orientation in the education system, some regular schools run both KG and Montessori streams. 

Important guidelines

  • In the KG program while the child must learn to read and write but if the focus is only that, we will miss out a great opportunity to develop young minds.
  • Choose the school, which will suit the development of the child emotionally.
  • Do not worry about how many poems the child has learnt in KG but see how many friends the child has.
  • Gross motor skills; fine motor skills, language skills and number recognitions; all schools do this and all children will learn.
  • Look for a school where your child will enjoy and will like to go.
  • See if the child is learning to share what it has? Is the child learning to appreciate its friend’s achievements?

Let Air condition bus, hot food etc. not be the criteria to select a school.

  • Open play spaces, clean toilets, pleasant staff, are important.
  • It is not the qualification and the accent of the teacher that matters but the concern and care that the teacher has that will make the difference.
  • More than the latest topics, values and morals are important.
  • Above all, it is not enough to choose to a good school but is necessary to partner the school.
  • This does not mean you have to spend time in school monitoring the teachers, have trust in the teacher’s ability as a professional.
  • The child must not get the impression that the school and parents are on opposite sides. They will play one against the other.
  • You can get the best for your child if both are on the same side. Otherwise it will be a blame game.

Quality time spent by parents with a young child must not be limited to intellectual development but at very young ages,

  • A larger amount of time must be spent on social, moral and emotional development-
  • Parents must discuss socially relevant matters, appreciation of peers, other children, sharing etc. these will show affect on the young ones.
  • Today around the world and especially in our country, social awareness is very limited.
  • With nuclear families, children are growing up without concern for others.
  • Language used at home with house help, support staff etc. makes a large impact on children.
  • To expect children not to be exposed to foul language is impractical because it is all around but make them realize that it is unacceptable and must be avoided is essential.

Choosing a school is a very subjective decision and each individual can have different priorities. The best way is to create a list of expectations and prioritize each of them and then give scores each school you visit. Total up all of them before you make your choice.

Questions to ask while selecting a school

  1. Does it follow KG / Montessori or mix?
  2. Is it a part of a chain of schools or a stand alone?
  3. How far is the school from my house (Travel and time involved)?
  4. Do I need school and day Care at one place or can they at different places?
  5. Would I want my child to continue in same school from KG to Grade-12 or do I want a specialist KG school?
  6. How much of emphasis on personal care?
  7. What is the peer group like at school?
  8. How approachable is the management?
  9. How affordable is it?

Rate these on a scale of 1 to 5 or 10 and then make your decision. Anyways this is not a irreversible reaction you can always change the school if things are going out of hand but remember a school is a community and you will never achieve 100% satisfaction anything between 60 to 70 % is great.

Questions or Comments? Write to us!

Do you have any questions or comments related to choosing a school? What has worked for you? Please submit your comments below.

About the Author:

Captain Unni Krishnan is a Founder and Director of LearnHive; he is also the Founder and Managing Trustee of Primus Public School, Bangalore. Prior to that he was the Founder and Trustee of Indus International School. At Primus, he has been instrumental in implementation of new teaching pedagogies. He has seamlessly integrated the International and Indian syllabi to help prepare students for higher studies both in India and Overseas. Capt. is a ‘Sword of Honor’ from the prestigious Officers Training Academy of the Indian Army.

About Learnhive: 

Learnhive is a leading provider of technology based learning solutions for K12 students, parents, and tutors. Our goal is to make curriculum based learning more effective and fun. We specialize in providing after school learning solutions for students and parents. Our flagship product, Personal Concept Tutor™ gives students the flexibility to learn concepts at their own pace using a wide variety of materials and resources suited for their individual needs. Our technology is compatible with multiple device formats such as desktops, laptops, tablets and smart phones to make learning more fun, interactive and available to students anywhere and at anytime. Signup for free to access the learning materials (lessons and exercises).

 

Is your child getting the required physical activity?

By Bhaven Shah,

There is no argument that academic excellence is highly valued in most schools and colleges across India. Most of the curriculum and academic calendars of schools are geared towards ensuring maximum pass out ratios or maximum number of students securing top spots in the state or national level examinations.  In order to meet their own expectations in this highly competitive academic context, parents often send their children for extra tuitions classes and other preparatory coaching institutes.

Photo credit: http://www.sxc.hu/photo/500872

But, are our children getting a well-rounded education? Are we building confident, balanced individuals for tomorrow, who seek out and achieve the limits of their excellence?

There are, of course, a few selected schools and parents who are able to provide a well-rounded exposure to their kids in terms of learning new life skills, hands-on camps or workshops, competitive sports and activities geared towards experiential learning. But, for the majority of other students, life is fairly one dimensional with not many mechanisms to develop their individual personality or even avenues to cope with academic stress. In addition, the combination of stress and lifestyle choices today could leave our children more prone to health issues than possibly their previous generation. Rapid urbanization, proliferation of Internet and increased used of transport have caused global changes in physical activity. A third of the people across the world do not even meet the minimum daily requirement of 30 minutes of moderate to intense physical activity.

Outdoor activities help kids stay fit and active which will benefit them in the long run. Besides, when they play with other kids outdoors, they learn to be more cordial and they try to work well in groups, which helps them develop qualities like leadership and co-operation. A simple change such as adding a 30-minute cycling or once a quarter trekking excursion can lead to positive impact on children. Such activities, along with a well-balanced nutrition diet, will assist in overall physical, emotional and social development in kids.

Every child and adult have their own view, and rightly so, of how they want to shape the future of today’s youth. No matter what their vision is, there is no denying that we all want our children to overcome challenges and achieve the pinnacle of their personal best. The best we can do to prepare our youth today is to make their body and mind fit to successfully run the marathon called life.

About the Author:

Bhaven is co-founder of Hundred Cubs, an outdoor lifestyle network. Hundred Cubs promotes physical activities in natural settings with focus on experiential learning and fitness. Hundred Cubs programs and online tools are geared towards personal development, team camaraderie and fitness focus. Prior to starting Hundred Cubs, Bhaven was a Deputy General Manager at WaterHealth International – India. In the past 15 years, Bhaven has held many management positions in the corporate sector primarily in the USA. He has an MBA from UC Berkeley and M.S. in Computer Science from Ball State University, Indiana. Bhaven can be reached at bhaven@hundredcubs.com.

About Learnhive: 

Learnhive is a leading provider of technology based learning solutions for K12 students, parents, and tutors. Our goal is to make curriculum based learning more effective and fun. We specialize in providing after school learning solutions for students and parents. Our flagship product, Personal Concept Tutor™ gives students the flexibility to learn concepts at their own pace using a wide variety of materials and resources suited for their individual needs. Our technology is compatible with multiple device formats such as desktops, laptops, tablets and smart phones to make learning more fun, interactive and available to students anywhere and at anytime. Signup for free to access the learning materials (lessons and exercises).

How can I give more freedom to my child?

By Ranjani Sastry,

How can I give more freedom to my child?

As parents, we expect our children to share their innermost feelings, their joys and their disappointments with us. But more often than not, as our children get into their teen years, we realize that they may not be upfront with what they are up to. They may want to share more with their friends than with you or they may get more introverted.

Photo credit: http://www.sxc.hu/photo/871015

Is it possible that they are behaving so because you haven’t given them enough freedom? Perhaps, they are afraid that you may disapprove of their choices or their friends. Perhaps they are hesitant of being judged by you. If so, it is time to change track in your parenting style.

Being a parent means walking a fine line between being your child’s best friend and confidante and at the same time gently guiding them towards making prudent decisions and following a righteous path.  We definitely want them to confide in us more than anything else, at the same, they should still look up to us as a parent and a role model.

Coming back to your point though…  Are your children not confiding in you completely? My answer to that is “let it be”. Even you do not share everything about yourself with them or with the world. Being a parent is an evolving role. A child needs a different kind of parent at every age. When she is a mere baby, she needs us to feed her, clothe her and soothe her when she needs to sleep. As she gets into toddler-hood and early childhood, she needs our fingers to hold on to as she learns to walk, she needs a shoulder to rest her head on when she is tired, to teach her right from wrong. As your child gets into her teenage years, though she may not ask for it openly, she needs our help as a parent to grow into a mature and confident individual.

First understand that textbook concepts do not work with parenting. You need to be spontaneous and go with the flow. There is no right or wrong style of parenting. You need to be attuned to your child’s verbal or non-verbal cues to gauge what your child needs from you.

Be open to forgiving your child for their missteps. Sometimes you will see your child making a mistake. You may advise them against it but they may not listen. Understand it and accept it that they need to make that mistake to learn a lesson that they will never forget. Let your child know that you will always love her and she can always come back to you. When your child was first learning to walk, she may have fallen and hurt herself several times till she got a hang of it. Just like you picked her up when she fell down, kissed her bruised knees and encouraged her to try one more time, you need to be there for her when she falters in her teen years.

Moral of the story: if you are happy and comfortable in your shoes, as a parent, your child will open up to you on her own.

About the Author:

Ranjani Sastry has done her graduation in Psychology and diploma in Counseling and skills. Currently, Ranjani is pursuing her Masters in Public administration. She is a co-founder and an active member of ‘Satori-let’s not yawn’*, a multilingual literary club based in Ahmedabad. She expresses her passion and compassion through reading, writing and involving herself in areas where she can contribute to personal growth. Her friends describe her as ‘if you meet her you will find someone who thinks out of the box and ideas galore’. Presently she is reading ‘I have a Dream’ by Ranshmi Bansal.

 About Learnhive: 

Learnhive is a leading provider of technology based learning solutions for K12 students, parents, and tutors. Our goal is to make curriculum based learning more effective and fun. We specialize in providing after school learning solutions for students and parents. Our flagship product, Personal Concept Tutor™ gives students the flexibility to learn concepts at their own pace using a wide variety of materials and resources suited for their individual needs. Our technology is compatible with multiple device formats such as desktops, laptops, tablets and smart phones to make learning more fun, interactive and available to students anywhere and at anytime. Signup for free to access the learning materials (lessons and exercises).

5 frequently asked questions about reading answered

By Captain Unni Krishnan,

Reading is a dying habit among the current generation of youth and is a matter of concern. I thought I would highlight the benefits of reading in a Q&A approach with the aim to not only influence a few more people to read but also motivate them to get their children to start reading.

Photo credit: Preethi Vijayaraj

1. How does reading influence a person?

Reading influences a persons speaking and writing abilities and more importantly has a great bearing on the personality as a whole because – Reading improves awareness on varied topics and in any gathering helps interact on a larger spectrum of issues.

2. What is the ideal age to start reading?

Reading is a habit and the earlier you start the better it is. The best way is for a mother to regularly start reading aloud to a little baby and then slowly grow this to sessions where both read together. As a family if you can have reading time that would be ideal. It is never too early nor too late to start reading. Of course it is easier to start reading when you are young and as you grow older you need more push.

3. How does reading benefit?

Some of the long term benefits are if you are person who reads, you will never be bored, as a book is a friend that can always be with you, it builds your self esteem because you are considered a resource person within your group. Reading is an active mental process and it is said that if you are mentally active you can stay away from Alzheimer; well then it is a great incentive.

4. Why should a child take up reading?

Among children reading can be of great help, it helps improve their vocabulary as they are exposed to so many new words and its different usage, it improves their concentration and focus, it improves their memory and above all improves their visualization – when you read a book you visualize a scene your way and when you see a movie you see it depicted as visualized by someone else.

5. Is there an age by when it is too late to start reading?

It is never late to start or improve your reading habit but an important aspect in this regard is to be serious about. Have a schedule or an allotted time every day that must be religiously followed for reading if you can have a common time as a family when everyone is reading then it is the best.

One interesting method suggested is what is called DEAR – which stands for Drop Everything And Read. You can follow this at home or office or anywhere else: set an alarm and whenever the alarm goes off stop whatever you are doing pick up a book and read. You can read for 15 minutes, 30 minutes or even an hour depending on the time you have.  You can even have more than one such slot every day or 2 slots on holidays and Sundays during vacations and so on..  You can add incentives and penalties to it. The options are plenty DEAR can be as creative as you want it to be the aim is to promote reading.

If you have been reading keep doing if not start now. Wishing all of you Happy reading.

About the Author:

Captain Unni Krishnan is a Founder and Director of LearnHive; he is also the Founder and Managing Trustee of Primus Public School, Bangalore. Prior to that he was the Founder and Trustee of Indus International School. At Primus, he has been instrumental in implementation of new teaching pedagogies. He has seamlessly integrated the International and Indian syllabi to help prepare students for higher studies both in India and Overseas. Capt. is a ‘Sword of Honor’ from the prestigious Officers Training Academy of the Indian Army.

About Learnhive: 

Learnhive is a leading provider of technology based learning solutions for K12 students, parents, and tutors. Our goal is to make curriculum based learning more effective and fun. We specialize in providing after school learning solutions for students and parents. Our flagship product, Personal Concept Tutor™ gives students the flexibility to learn concepts at their own pace using a wide variety of materials and resources suited for their individual needs. Our technology is compatible with multiple device formats such as desktops, laptops, tablets and smart phones to make learning more fun, interactive and available to students anywhere and at anytime. Signup for free to access the learning materials (lessons and exercises).