Geometry is the odd ball of high school math…you either love it or hate it. Many “non-math” students find it is a refreshing break from the equations and formulas of algebra. But others do struggle. I spent a year teaching nothing but geometry back to back in Philadelphia. That experience and multiple tutoring jobs helped me pinpoint these main trouble areas.

Measuring Angles with a Protractor: It seems so simple. But most students don’t understand the concept of what an angle is and then don’t understand what they are measuring. In my high school classes we dedicated an entire day to learning how to use a protractor.

Understanding the parts of a triangle: This is another big one. When it comes to the Pythagorean Theorem the most common mistake is that students mix up the legs and the hypotenuse. If they don’t correctly identify them they misuse the formula.

This becomes an even bigger issue in trigonometry when they need to identify adjacent and opposite sides.

Correctly Using the Order of Operations in Formulas: There are lots of formulas in geometry and all you really need to do is substitute the values and evaluate. But lots of students do not correctly follow the order of operations when they evaluate.