Websites To Help Your Child With Academics

Tired of not being able to help your child with her studies? Worry no more! Here are some good educational websites that can do the job for you.

By Gemmarie Venkataramani

The dawn of the Internet revolution appears to be complex for some modern day parents. The sudden influx of information can be baffling. While some parents blame the Internet for the changing behaviour of their children, several others have embraced it as a means to enhance their knowledge.

The net: a source for academic help

Internet has made parenting much easier these days. Today, learning at home is more enjoyable and stress-free. The Internet is a great resource for modern day parents, who have lived the life of students devoid of any such academic help. Those were the times when teachers were sought to answer every question, and friends and relatives could be reached only through letters. Finding places and directions involved the handling of hard-bound and heavy atlases, while libraries were the only place where reference material could be found.

But today, the Internet offers not just news and entertainment on the go, but also helps users to connect with others via social networking. Parents of school-going children often turn to the Internet for extra reading and reference material to help their children in academics.

Parents are turning more and more to the Internet for help to answer the countless questions children ask. For some time, Kamini Nagarajan, the mother of 13-year-old Ashwin, felt helpless as she found that her son’s lessons, homework and school projects were very different from what she had studied at school. “Most of what he is studying now did not seem to figure when I was a student studying the same subjects, or maybe I just do not remember anymore”, she says.

Having trouble with Quadratic Equations?

  1. Homeschoolmath.net: A comprehensive math resource site for students, parents and teachers. The author, Maria Miller, is a math teacher who became a homeschooler and a work-at-home mom. The in-built resources emphasise understanding of concepts instead of learning by rote. The site offers free worksheets, math articles/lessons, games and quizzes.
  2. Webmath: A math-help website that generates instant answers to specific math questions as soon as the user enters a query and clicks the solve button. The answers generated and displayed are real-time, with appropriate explanation and steps involved to arrive at the answer.
  3. A Maths Dictionary: An animated and interactive math glossary of more than 600 commonly used math terms explained with easy-to-understand illustrations. Jenny Eather of Australia has made this glossary different, with an interactive interface. For instance, a student can learn the concept of ‘ascending order’ by placing a set of numbers from the smallest to the largest. Or learn about prime factors by creating a factor tree.
  4. Math TV: There is no substitute to a real-time teacher showing you how to solve a math problem. McKeague and his assistants do just that. The site has a series of videos that guide the students step-by-step in basic math. It also covers advanced concepts in algebra, trigonometry and calculus.
  5. Coolmath4kids/coolmath: Log on for a fun-filled math activity – it provides instructions, challenges and games in the concepts of addition, subtraction, multiplication, division, fractions and decimals. Its sister website, coolmath.com, focuses on higher level math skills, typically learnt from classes 6th to 10th. It also has instructions and worksheets on pre-algebra, algebra, geometry, trigonometry, and money and finance.

Other sites to check out:

  • Cut-the-knot
  • Mathisfun
  • Visualmathlearning
  • Mathforum
  • Funbrain
  • mathnerds

A boon for parents

She finds the Internet a boon, as she constantly seeks information from Google, Youtube and other sites that offer academic help. “There is a considerable amount of information available. One just needs to hit the search button and thousands of sites will come up offering help,” she explains.

“Give a person a fish and you feed him for a day; teach that person to use the Internet and he won't bother you for weeks.” - Source unknown

Though the Internet provides a plethora of information and academic help on hand, there is nothing quite like being supportive and encouraging, and inherently believing in a child’s ability. Every child is different, and each one has a special talent or skill. Though some children may not be good in studies, they may excel in sports, music or any other field.

The real challenge for parents lies in tapping the child’s talent, bringing out the child’s potential and helping him reach the goal. Do not be perplexed...even that can be Googled!

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