When the Math Anxiety Shifts to Math Boredom

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How can anybody believe mathematics is boring? I talked with my household about it, and they agreed with my students that math is certainly boring.They actually, truly concurred.

It usually goes like this, “… no offense, Mrs. Russell, but math is so boring.” Normally they state this after I tell them how much fun we will have in math. Obviously this is not the very first time I have heard this, however Im hearing it a lot this year.

They said the reason I do not discover it boring is since Ive always been proficient at it. Thats not real. Its due to the fact that I thought it was intriguing and kept going till I figured it out if I am great at it now.

It truly bothers me that my students believe math is so dull. I do not desire them to leave my math class with that viewpoint. I seem like part of my mission is showing my classes how wonderful and enjoyable math can be. , if they think maths boring I need to do a better job revealing them its not.

But recently instead of trainees speaking about being anxious, Im hearing a lot students discuss how dull mathematics is.


As a mathematics teacher, I have actually thought a lot about how to make mathematics less difficult for my students. I know anxiety is something that can work together with finding out math.

I would say Im of typical math capability at best. I took pleasure in believing about it, and perplexing over it.

Why Students Think Math Is Boring

Theres the truth that whether something is dull or interesting is very subjective. What some trainees discover interesting others will find uninteresting. Theres not time to personally tailor lessons for individual students.

I believe part of the issue is the amount of material we have to cover each year. Theres not time to let students simply understand and check out on their own. I find myself investing so much time attempting to resolve the course of research study that there isnt time for much else. Sometimes I get in a rut or Im not as passionate as I must be, and that likewise has an effect on trainees.

What Can I Do to Make Math Interesting?

But thats not letting trainees see that mathematics is fun: the scavenger hunt is the fun part, mathematics is still the boring part. Same thing with the bingo and Jeopardy video games I played with my trainees. I want them to see that the math IS the enjoyable. I desire them to take pleasure in working on the issues, fighting with issues, and then figuring them out.

We offer trainees a few mathematics problems and then let them do “fun” activities, like a scavenger hunt etc. I do it all the time.

Below are a few methods and activities Ive been utilizing in my effort to combat the dullness:

► Whiteboards

Seeing somebody do mathematics is not enjoyable, but doing math yourself can be. There are times when direct instruction is required, however recently Ive been making an effort to put the math in my trainees hands as quickly as possible.

Whiteboards are really useful in this regard. Trainees can quickly do math, and simply as quickly eliminate mistakes. They can hold up their boards and get feedback, and I can see what they know. This year I taught multiplying binomials solely with whiteboards, and the students truly liked it. A few even stated that increasing binomials was, yes, fun.

► Let the Students Be the Teacher

I have specific trainees who like to enter front of the class and be the instructor. I will appoint them an issue to provide to the class, and they will work it out on the SmartBoard and teach it to their peers. They enjoy describing how to work the problem, and the other trainees delight in gaining from them.

► Let Students Create Their Own Data

I likewise teach AP Statistics, and I am discovering that students love to create their own information. This “my data” idea can bring over into other math courses and grade levels.

It is far more enjoyable and intriguing to trainees if they can use information they produce. This year I have had them time their heartbeats for one minute and inspect the length of time they could stand on one leg with their eyes closed (check out the Blind Stork Test here).

They have actually likewise tossed thumb tacks and attempted to discriminate between Coke and Pepsi in a blind trial run. No matter how simple the activity is, students are more engaged when they are gathering and analyzing their own information.

► Dont Stop Learning

It can be close to impossible for me to discover time to find out something new associated to mathematics or to look into new teaching methods. But when I do find the time, it absolutely pays off. Some of my coworkers recently went to a math convention and came back and shared the brand-new things they found out, and I truly felt fired up about attempting those concepts out in my class.


Evaluation 180

Please share in the comments if you have activities or concepts about how to make math more fundamentally intriguing for trainees. Listed below Ive noted some other resources I think might be helpful. Some of them I have used in my classroom and some I havent attempted “live” yet.

Looking Ahead

I required the pointer from my students that not everybody believes mathematics is intriguing. I plan to do much better in the future to share my interest for math and explain why I am passionate. It helps them and me!

Would You Rather Math

Classroom Challenges

It truly troubles me that my students believe math is so dull. We provide students a few math problems and then let them do “enjoyable” activities, like a scavenger hunt etc. Thats not letting trainees see that mathematics is fun: the scavenger hunt is the enjoyable part, mathematics is still the boring part. If you have activities or concepts about how to make mathematics more fundamentally interesting for trainees, please share in the comments. I required the reminder from my students that not everyone thinks math is intriguing.

Spurious Correlations

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