How to Tell Your Parents You Got a Bad Grade on a Math Test


Maybe you knew right away that you didn't do well on the test. Or perhaps you were surprised by the grade when you received your paper back and it was covered in red marks. Either way, you have to tell your parents. Keep a level head and deal with the situation calmly. Tell them about how you can make up the points you lost, if possible. If you do it right, you may be able to turn the situation into something positive.

  • Approach your parents at a time when you can all sit and talk without feeling rushed or stressed about other situations. Talking to your parents together may help everyone stay a little calmer.

  • Show your parents the test and tell them you messed up.

  • Explain any extenuating circumstances or reasons behind the bad grade, if necessary. Generally, making excuses for a bad grade will not solve the problem. But if there are specific reasons for your test score, talk about them. Be honest -- if you got the bad score because you weren't listening and you did not do your homework, tell your parents the truth. However, if you have been trying hard in class and you do not understand the materials, tell your parents and they may be able to help you.

  • Maintain a calm demeanor while you talk to your parents about your math issues. Even if your parents get upset, try to keep calm.

  • Make a plan to improve. If your poor grade is because of a lack of effort, promise your parents that you will work harder, do your homework and study for your tests. If your poor grade is because you do not understand your math class, you or your parents should approach your teacher to discuss the problem. You may be able to get extra help from the teacher or a tutor.

  • Communicate with your parents about your math class and grades for the remainder of the semester. Share your grades as you earn them. If you improve, you can all celebrate. If you still have problems, you can continue to problem-solve until you begin to improve.

Tips & Warnings

  • Some teachers may require a parental signature on a test with a bad score. If your teacher wants a signature on the test, ask a parent to sign the test after you finish talking about it.

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