Maths – as easy as 1, 2, 3?

Maths!!  I suppose you could say it’s a bit like marmite; you either love it or hate it!  It can put the fear of God into some people and evoke feelings of happiness and pure fulfilment in others.  Me?  I am probably somewhere in the middle of the both of them.

I remember Maths from about Primary 3.  I attended Lenzie Moss PS having just moved from Carlogie PS in Carnoustie and was placed in a pleasant class with a pleasant teacher.  Maths was working through the red SPMG workbook. My teacher would mark with a large dot where I was to work to.  I LOVED it!; the maths, the workbook; the sense of achievement I felt reaching that dot and the teacher then marking my work and dotting a further section for me to attempt; the page of ticks as I’d gotten most of the answers correct.

But that was a long time ago! 1985 to be more accurate and a lot has changed since then.  The maths got harder and harder and I ended up sort of falling out of love with it a little bit.  Don’t get me wrong, I still LIKE doing maths but I know the feeling is definitely not mutual; maths does not like me!  Because quite frankly, I consider myself no longer very good at it.  I managed to scrape a pass at ‘foundie’ level during high school and didn’t really partake in maths as such after leaving – until I decided that a career in teaching was for me.  Requirements for university entry?  Intermediate 2 level at grade C or above.  Ssssssssssssigh!!!  It took me 2 attempts, working my butt off but my efforts were rewarded and I gained a B grade pass for my blood, sweat and tears.  No mean feat I’ll tell you!

So, even though I like Maths a medium sized bit more than it likes me, I chose it as my elective.  I hope to change its feelings of unrequited love and be more than just adequate in learning (and now teaching) the subject.  I want to feel confident that I know how to solve mathematical problems and be able to achieve my primary 3 feeling of achievement and joy at doing so.  I want to be able to make my pupils experience that sense of excitement at broaching the subject.  And through my sense of anxiety at Maths I am more able to understand how children are feeling towards it if they struggle and I will use this in a positive way to ensure I am a supportive teacher who strives to meet the needs of her class.

1 thought on “Maths – as easy as 1, 2, 3?

  1. Richard Holme

    Hi Lesleigh,
    I hope you are developing a love for maths again. I think the feeling you had getting all those ticks says a lot about education, and learning in general. I wonder if you are able, when teaching, to try and change the way kids see maths as not every pupil gets the rows of ticks. Perhaps you could look at some of the work Jo Boaler who suggests we are approaching school maths all wrong – https://www.youcubed.org/
    And I should add that I love maths now, but I hated it at school. But I have always loved Marmite!
    Hope the maths is beginning to add up again…!.
    Richard

    Reply

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