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IB Maths Tutor - Sydney (1 Viewer)

Drongoski

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A Message to Parents of Students Planning to do the IB Diploma Programme

The IB Diploma is, in my view, a very rich, balanced and rigorous programme. In NSW, only a few hundred have the privilege to enrol in such a programme. You have to be enrolled in the score or so Independent schools offering such a programme. But the programme is also a very demanding one. From my years of tutoring IB maths, one thing that strikes me is the stress most of the students experience - there is so much to do, and there simply isn't enough time. Besides the heavy extra-curricular activities just add to the pressure. I could only watch helplessly.

But there is a way around this problem. Do some of the coursework in Year 10. Trinity Grammar is one school that does this - it commences the programme in the last term of Year 10. In my view that is smart. If you ask your school about this, they may not agree with me. But just ask your son or daughter to talk to those currently doing the programme; ask about their experience and for their honest view.

If you can cover 10 to 25% of the IB Maths, in Year 10, that would be a tremendous help later on. From my experience, most students begin Year 11 less than adequately prepared. Also, typically a school with about 15 students opting for Maths HL, end up with 2 or 3 finishing the course. The rest would have dropped to Maths SL or Maths Studies SL.

I'd be happy to talk to any parent wanting my advice. Just call me on: 0490 - 780 347.
 
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Drongoski

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Musings of an IB Maths tutor . . . .

From my years of tutoring IB Maths, one thing strikes me. A large proportion of students entering Yr 11 do not have an adequate foundation to handle their Mathematics, be it Mathematics Studies, Mathematics(SL) and Mathematics(HL). Many of the maths they are supposed to have learnt in their Yr 8, Yr 9 and Yr 10, they have still not learnt it well. This is not unique to students doing the IB, but for those commencing the HSC programme. I have always had the nagging suspicion that they have not been well-prepared in their primary school. The idea of using one teacher to handle all subjects is such a flawed idea. Teachers who are excellent in teaching History and Drama may be ill-equipped to teach Maths. I cannot understand why the educational system here does not provide for specialist Maths and Science teachers for Years 4, 5 and 6.

I have encouraged parents to start their children off at least a few months before commencing their IB, not only to strenthen their maths foundation, but to try to cover a few IB Maths topics, in order to have a head start. This will help them cope with the very heavy IB programme.

To be continued.
 
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Drongoski

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If you are looking for an IB Maths tutor, you are looking for someone can do the job. Unless you have a background in maths and is familiar with the curriculum, how can you tell if someone is any good. There are hundreds out there who are offering to tutor your son or daughter. Some may come from an associated field, like Engineering. Some of them are very good in their maths. Many would be recent IB graduates with a 7 in their IB Maths - but is that enough?

In my view, a good tutor, like a good teacher must, above everything else, be an expert in his subject; he/she must have subject knowledge 1 clear level above the subject taught. For IB Maths, it means he/she must have a degree majoring in mathematics from a respected university. Of course this is what we, in mathematics, refer to as a "necessary, but insufficient condition". But there are some people who are real experts in maths, but are poor communicators or who do not have the patience. A good tutor must also be passionate in wanting to share his knowledge and techniques for successfully handling the course.

Each year most of those who have topped the HSC in maths (Ext 1 & Ext 2) have gone into the fields of Medicine, Law, Actuary and Engineering. A relatively small percentage have stayed in the field of mathematics. So, whilst there are some outstanding maths teachers, the average maths teacher is not amongst the best in the field.
 
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Drongoski

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With 5 students completing their IB last year, I'm now looking forward to guiding a few more this year.
 

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