Maths It isn’t as scary or difficult as it sounds. For many, it’s a subject they absolutely dread. However, it’s the one subject that will help you even after school is over! It’s also widely used in other subjects like Physics and Chemistry. The best thing about Maths is that, once you get the hang of it, it can be your most scoring subject. It’s not impossible, in fact it’s easier than it looks.
Here are some tips to tackle Maths like an expert!
Practice as much as you can
Maths is a hands on subject. You can’t just ‘learn’ chapters, you have to understand concepts and then keep practicing. It’s ideal to start practicing right from day 1. That way, you will be well practiced by the time the exam arrives. When you’re studying content heavy subjects, you can slip in a bit of Maths practice, so it doesn’t get overwhelming.
Start by solving examples
Don’t start by solving complex problems. If you have just understood the chapter, solving hard sums will give you the wrong answer and discourage you. It might even make you hate Maths some more. Instead, start simple. Solve the examples in your textbook. Make sure you don’t look at the answer before hand. Once you have solved it, compare it to the textbook solution, or the reference book you are using. See if all your steps are correct, not just the main answer. Once you get all the steps right, you are ready to tackle the simpler problems. Once you have mastered those, you can move on to the difficult ones.
Clear all your doubts
It’s easy to get stuck at a doubt in Maths. Don’t let your doubts build, get them cleared as soon as they occur. The sooner you get your doubts resolved, the sooner you get better at those topics. Ask your class teacher, friends or online on an app.
Note down all formulae
When you see something enough, it registers in your memory, even if it’s unconscious. This why some people prefer to stick diagrams or formulae on their study table or in their room. Make flash cards of all the formulae in your textbook and decorate your room with them, at-least until the exam is over!
Understand the derivation
You might think the derivation isn’t as important from the exam point of view, but it’s critical for understanding. You can’t always learn a formula, you need to understand the logic behind it. For example, you need to know why speed is a function of distance and time, instead of simply learning the formula and replacing it with numbers. If you rote learn, there are chances you might forget it during the exam, but if your concepts are clear, it will always be easy to remember.
Don’t lose touch with the basics
Your basics are everything in Maths. Even if you’re studying for JEE, you need to have a strong foundation of class 9 through class 12. Most chapters in Maths build on previous ones. If your foundation isn’t as strong as you’d like, then keep going back and practicing sums from select chapters in previous years. Always know your basics.Use these tips and see your weak subject turn into your strength! It’s time to make friends with Maths, because that friendship is going to last a while.
About the Author:
Manish Kumar graduated from IIT Bombay in 2006 with a degree in Metallurgical and Materials Science. He then pursued masters in Materials Science Engineering from Georgia Institute of Technology, USA. Post his graduation, he joined Indian School Finance Company, where he was part of the core team responsible for business strategies and growth. In 2013, he co-founded SEED Schools, a venture focused on improving quality of low-cost K-12 education in India with a vision to make quality education accessible. He is currently Vice President of Product - Learning & Pedagogy at Toppr.com.