I Don’t See F-U-N in the Word M-A-T-H

Math. I hate it. I’ve never liked it and quite frankly, I don’t think I’ll ever like it. Why you ask? Well, I don’t know, I guess I’ve never really been good at it. Unfortunately for me, as a Middle Years teachers I have no choice but to teach everything and anything. Especially in my upcoming three-week block. URGH!

Well I guess instead of drowning myself in pity I could be a grown up about it and figure why I’m not exactly thrilled about teaching math(other than the very obvious point that I don’t actually enjoy it). As I sit here and think about it, I think the biggest fear that I seem to be having is over the fact that I’ll never be able to make Math fun and engaging for students. I can only imagine that if Math was never intriguing for me, there must be so many other students who think and feel the same way that I do.

I think this must explain the reason why I decided to take on the topic of Math for my Inquiry project for my ECS class. Before I start my three week block I hope to become some sort of wizard who can just zap her students to like, understand and even want to do math. Is it possible to do these things? I guess when I think about it, math is so heavily dependent on using a textbook, but is it possible to rely less on textbook activities? Another struggle I’m likely to face is tackling students who learn in different ways. Some students learn from pictures, other words, and some numbers; can you take a concept that is so heavily based on one of those and change it into something everyone can understand. I remember asking myself why in the world I had to learn math as I was doing it in Elementary – was there any relevance into my real world? I think that’s an important concept to bring into your classroom when it comes to math; how can students apply this into the “real world”.

Currently, I am in the process of trying to find different resources to support my theories and the approaches that I plan to use in my class. I am trying to find fun math games on Pinterest, videos on YouTube and even different Math Apps that students can use on their devices.

If you happen to know anything that is helpful in getting Middle Years students engaged in Math please comment down below! That would be greatly appreciated.

Cheers!

 

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3 thoughts on “I Don’t See F-U-N in the Word M-A-T-H

  1. akoback says:

    Alisha,
    Isn’t it interesting we feel at such a deficit in regards to making math fun/intriguing when our own math experience was not fun and/or intriguing? I guess why I am saying this is because, why do we feel this way? Why do we feel at such a deficit? My thoughts, upon reading your blog post, is that we actually do have a lot of resources at our finger tips. The only thing we are really LACKING is experience… And lacking experience as a teacher is something ever teacher feels/experiences being a pre-service.
    Although, these thoughts and opinions undoubtedly do not make teaching math an easier task. But perhaps, if we, including myself, establish why we feel at such a deficit maybe we can realize that the deficit isn’t so large or, perhaps even, is imaginary.

    All the best future educator!
    Amanda

    Like

  2. April Hoffman says:

    Hey Alisha!

    I completely understand your fear of teaching Math — it is the subject that I am most worried about teaching too. However, I am really excited that I have been given the opportunity to teach it in my 3 week block, so I can experience it before being in the classroom myself.

    My goal is to make math interactive and hands on. I don’t want to limit my students to only being able to find one answer or one way to do something. I absolutely loved the Roulette game played in EMTH 317 with doritoes — those types of experiences are what will make math stick with your students. Making learning relevant to a student’s life experiences is the best way to reach them I think. For example, I am teaching a unit on tessellations. By the end of the unit, students will be creating their own wrapping paper based on the pattern that they create. Once you have a better relationship with your students, you will be able to personalize your math lessons so that they are more intriguing to your students based on their interests.

    I personally like to stay away from the textbook. Although it is a great reference when trying to figure out what on earth you are teaching, I find it more of a guide for myself than a dictator of the students’ learning experience. Don’t be afraid to experiment with your own lessons and ideas. This will make learning math more engaging for your students — to make it relateable to them and you.

    Keep pushing through — it might seem scary now, but this is the best time to experiment with different teaching approaches, Ask teachers around your school how they approach teaching math. They might have some awesome ideas that you can incorporate into your own teaching methods.

    Good luck! I look forward to hearing how your teaching experience goes!

    Like

  3. nick larsen says:

    I relate a lot with what you’ve said, But if it helps I think you are going to do great in teaching math in a fun and interactive way. I think the people who have the most trouble with math are the ones who end up being a great teacher because they understand how their students may feel about math.

    Like

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