For many students, IB math is the most challenging course in their degree progression. It requires sustained focus over months and years to excel in the concepts which build on each other. To succeed in this course students need to constantly ensure their mathematical foundations so they can continue to learn new concepts that build on earlier knowledge. This is exhausting, say many of the Aegis Advisors’ IB Math private tutors! They see that taking one day off can feel like it sets a student back because the future lessons all depend so heavily on the past.
This level of engagement can be overwhelming, and for students with many other challenging curricular and extracurricular obligations, burnout can happen easily. We talked to our most experienced IB Math private tutors to gather some tips for dealing with burnout.
- Prevention is the best treatment.
The best way to deal with burnout is to stop it before it happens. Students who succeed with the least stress in IB have plans to take care of themselves and their studies before the semester even begins. According to our IB Math private tutors this can look different for different students. For those who love math, this means mixing in fun math related activities, like join math team or finding ways to apply their skills outside the classroom. This helps math become less of a chore that can become exhausting and more of a fun exploration. For those who do not like math and do not want to do extra math in their freetime, this can be finding rewards for completing math assignments and creating routines to associate math with positive concepts. This might mean having ice cream after finishing math homework or snuggling with a cat only while doing math homework.
- Ask for help.
If prevention is not doing the trick, and students are starting to experience burnout in math, asking for help in the next step. This help can come from family and friends or a therapist to talk about the emotional strain of school work. It can also be in the form of academic support from teachers or expert professionals like our IB Math private tutors. When a student realizes they are not alone on this mathematical and emotional journey, they can build the support they need to face their burnout and get back on track with excelling emotionally and academically. Tutors can provide a great baseline of study plans, personalized teaching, and confidence boosters. These make a huge difference when students are struggling to find motivation in class.
- Re-evaluate priorities.
When burnout in math happens, it often comes from many factors. For busy high school students, math is just one of many responsibilities they have. Many students manage multiple priorities well, but if burnout is occurring and the student is not finding their workload manageable, a next step is to look at how they are spending their time every week and see what needs to be reprioritized. Our IB Math private tutors suggest keeping track of everything a student is doing for a week and note how much time is spent on each activity. At the end of the week, the student and their support system, whether that be an IB math private tutor, friend, therapist, or family member, can look at how they spent their time and see how they might want to redistribute their time. Maybe that means spending ten less minutes on social media everyday and instead talking to a friend on the phone. Reprioritization does not have to mean spending more time on school work, it can also be about being more purposeful with how students are getting their needs met so they can be as present as possible when engaging in their studies.
These are just a few of the expert tips from Aegis Advisors’ IB math private tutors, many of whom have dealt with burnout while working with students and in their own studies. If your student is starting to feel a lack of motivation and exhaustion from their studies, especially IB Math, Aegis Advisors is here to help. Our team of dedicated professionals can assist with academic strategy, all major curriculums, and test prep. Contact us to see how we help your child grow to his or her full potential.