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THE MAG YOUR PROBLEMS: WHY HAS DAUGHTER GONE OFF MATHS?

QAT her primary school, my daughter nearly always came top in maths. She was in the top set and either she or one of the boys in her class always got the best marks.

But in her first term at secondary school her marks went right down. We put it down to settling into a new school but now, in her second year, her marks are even lower.

She's started trying to wriggle out of going to school when she's got a double maths lesson. She feigns stomach aches that mysteriously disappear when her maths lesson is over.

She's a very self-confident girl so I'm pretty sure she's not being bullied and I doubt that it's the teaching, because she says she likes her teacher. The boy from her primary school is in her set and he still gets high marks.

I feel I should talk to the school about it, but might they just say she's not working hard enough?

SHIRLEY, Warwickshire A YOU should talk to your daughter's maths teacher about her sudden aversion to a subject she once did so well in, Shirley. He can take a closer look at her work, decide where her current difficulties lie and offer more help.

A factor to consider is the pressure on your daughter to keep pace with the high marks expected of her. Can you swear you haven't added to that by fretting over her falling grades?

Incidentally, it's quite common for children grappling for the first time with abstract sums to find the going difficult. Girls can find grasping the idea of 'minus' answers more difficult than boys.

It's to do with differing brain development between the sexes, not with intelligence!
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Title Annotation:Features
Publication:Sunday Mercury (Birmingham, England)
Date:Oct 5, 2003
Words:284
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