# The HACK to ACE MATH no matter what - Caltech study tip

TLDRThis video reveals the secret to mastering math, emphasizing the importance of problem-solving skills over rote memorization. The speaker shares personal experiences and strategies, such as breaking down complex problems into simpler parts and truly understanding mathematical concepts. By applying these methods, students can improve their math abilities, leading to success in exams and beyond.

### Takeaways

- 😖 The feeling of being stuck in math class while peers seem to breeze through can be frustrating and embarrassing.
- 🔑 Discovering a 'magic secret' to math can transform a student's performance and lead to success in math competitions and advanced classes.
- 🎓 The difference in students' performance in math can be extreme, suggesting that there might be a 'magic secret' only known to good students.
- 🧠 Math is about developing a 'math sense' and problem-solving skills rather than just memorizing formulas.
- 👨🏫 Private tutoring can significantly improve students' math scores by teaching them tricks and a flipped mindset.
- 🛠️ Improving real math skills is more beneficial than just accumulating more formulas or tools.
- 📚 Understanding the concepts behind math problems is crucial for solving them with less effort and without memorization.
- 📉 Students often struggle with remembering formulas and solving unfamiliar problems, which can be addressed by improving math skills.
- 🔍 Breaking down complex math problems into foundational parts and understanding each part is key to solving them effectively.
- 📈 Reviewing and understanding the tools or concepts needed for each part of a math problem is essential for building a strong foundation.
- 🚀 Trying to solve math problems from scratch and comparing your attempts with the solutions helps build problem-solving skills and understanding.

### Q & A

### What was the narrator's experience with math in sixth grade?

-The narrator felt embarrassed and confused by math in sixth grade, pretending to understand while feeling lost and hopeless.

### What did the narrator's father teach him that helped improve his math skills?

-The narrator's father taught him the 'magic secret' of being good at math, which led to his success in math competitions and advanced math classes.

### What is the key difference between students who find math extremely hard and those who find it easy?

-The key difference is the understanding of math concepts and problem-solving skills, rather than just memorizing formulas.

### What is the 'magic trick' demonstrated in the script to solve the area ratio problem?

-The 'magic trick' involves redrawing the shape and turning the inner square 45 degrees to visually see that the red area is half of the blue circle area, making the solution obvious without calculations.

### Why is it important to break down a complex math problem into its foundational parts?

-Breaking down a complex problem helps to identify and understand the fundamental concepts behind it, which is essential for developing strong math skills.

### What is the role of 'math sense' in solving math problems?

-'Math sense' refers to the intuitive understanding of mathematical relationships and concepts, which aids in problem-solving and makes solutions come more easily.

### How does the narrator help his students improve their math scores in the ACT and SAT?

-The narrator uses tricks and a flipped mindset that focuses on understanding rather than memorization, significantly increasing his students' scores.

### What is the narrator's advice for students who struggle with remembering math formulas?

-The narrator advises students to focus on understanding the concepts behind the formulas rather than just memorizing them.

### Why is it beneficial to try solving a math problem from scratch before looking at the answer key?

-Solving a problem from scratch helps build problem-solving skills and understanding, which are essential for real-world applications where solutions are not readily available.

### What is the three-part solution the narrator suggests for practicing math effectively?

-The three-part solution includes breaking the problem into parts, reviewing the tools needed for each part, and trying to solve the problem from scratch before comparing with the answer key.

### How does the narrator define math and what is the importance of this definition?

-The narrator defines math as understanding and problem-solving, not memorization. This definition is important because it emphasizes the need for a deep understanding of concepts over rote memorization.

### Outlines

### 🔢 Overcoming Math Anxiety

The speaker shares a personal story of struggling with math in sixth grade, feeling embarrassed and lost compared to peers who seemed to grasp concepts easily. This experience led to a realization that math is not just about memorizing formulas but understanding concepts and problem-solving skills. The speaker's father later taught them a 'magic secret' that transformed their math abilities, leading to success in math competitions and advanced classes. The video aims to reveal the 'truth' behind math struggles and offers a solution to improve math sense and problem-solving, suggesting that the difference in students' math abilities lies in their approach to understanding rather than rote memorization.

### 📚 Mastering Math Through Understanding

This paragraph delves into the importance of breaking down complex math problems into foundational parts and understanding each part deeply. The speaker, a private tutor for the ACT and SAT, emphasizes that memorizing formulas is not as effective as truly understanding the concepts behind them. The speaker provides a three-part solution to improve math skills: breaking problems into parts, reviewing and understanding the necessary tools for each part, and attempting to solve problems from scratch without immediately looking at the answer key. The goal is to build problem-solving skills that are transferable to real-world scenarios, where solutions are not readily provided. The speaker encourages students to adopt an attitude of wanting to build their math skills for long-term success.

### 💡 The Power of Fundamental Understanding in Math

The final paragraph reinforces the message that understanding math fundamentals is crucial for success, not just in school but also in life. The speaker shares insights from students who have benefited from this approach, highlighting the development of 'math sense' that enables them to tackle any problem. The speaker criticizes the common practice of teaching math through memorization and emphasizes the need for a shift in mindset. They provide a personal example of how understanding the unit circle has allowed them to retain knowledge and solve problems effectively, even after many years. The speaker concludes by encouraging viewers to embrace this new approach to math and to share their progress and questions in the comments.

### Mindmap

### Keywords

### 💡Magic Secret

### 💡Math Sense

### 💡Problem-Solving Skills

### 💡Mental Block

### 💡Formulas

### 💡Understanding vs. Memorizing

### 💡Foundational Concepts

### 💡Private Tutor

### 💡ACT and SAT

### 💡Math Toolkit

### 💡Unit Circle

### Highlights

The speaker shares a personal story of struggling with math in sixth grade and how a 'magic secret' helped them excel in math later on.

A magic trick in math is demonstrated where a simple rotation of a shape makes a complex problem easy to solve, emphasizing the importance of problem-solving skills.

The video suggests that understanding math concepts is more important than memorizing formulas for effective problem-solving.

The speaker's experience as a private tutor shows that teaching problem-solving skills can significantly improve students' math scores.

Students often struggle with memorizing formulas without understanding the underlying math concepts, which can lead to frustration and poor performance.

The importance of 'math sense' is highlighted as a key to solving any problem that comes your way, rather than relying on memorized tricks.

A three-part solution is introduced to improve math skills: breaking down problems, reviewing foundational concepts, and attempting to solve problems from scratch.

Breaking down complex math problems into smaller, foundational parts can help in understanding the underlying concepts better.

Reviewing and understanding the tools or concepts needed for each part of a problem is crucial for building a strong math foundation.

Attempting to solve math problems without looking at the answer key first helps in building problem-solving skills and understanding.

Comparing your initial problem-solving attempt with the provided solution is an effective way to learn and build problem-solving abilities.

The real-world application of math skills is emphasized, where understanding and problem-solving are more valuable than memorization.

The video encourages viewers to embrace a new approach to learning math that focuses on understanding rather than memorization for long-term success.

The importance of upfront effort in truly understanding math concepts is stressed, as it pays off in the long run.

The video ends with an invitation for viewers to share their progress, ask questions, and engage with the speaker for further assistance in math.