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  • Mary Olsen

    August 8, 2022 at 12:51 pm

    Traditional lessons always start with the teacher explaining and demonstrating how to do the math that is being introduced. But this lesson style leaves it a lot more open for students to discover truths found in math. Students can discover the math.

    I have tried a few of your lessons. I looked for easier intro type lessons as I am now teaching Algebra Readiness which is for students that are struggling in their regular math class. So my class is a second class in math for them for the semester. Some of the classes really tried to get into solving a given problem, others really resisted diving in. All of the students wanted to be spoon fed….like the traditional math class. They were easily frustrated and after a few tries I gave up. I actually started the semester out with growth mindset videos from youCubed which I showed one daily for the first 7-8 days of classes. I wanted to break down the negative stereo types and negative self talk and have students understand that everyone can do math. Because all my students struggle in math I have very few students that can be encouragers, and/or leaders.

    I truly believe my students can benefit from this type of teaching but the energy to help them overcome their negative attitude and beliefs often drains me. Also even though they have learned some of the tools that could help them solve a problem they don’t know when using them could be helpful.

    I don’t know how to reconcile this with traditional teaching. When do students learn how to write equations or how to show proper work for multi-step equations etc.. How do they learn this without being taught? I took this course hoping it would help to answer the questions I had when I tried to do this, this past school year. I want to teach this way and help my students to discover their ability to problem solve. I just need more tools and better understanding so that I can figure out how to work through the inevitable bumps in the road as I pursue this way of teaching.