Lets Talk, Math.

Picture, when you are at the dining room table helping your child with their homework. Then, when it is time for Math, the energy level drops and you find them completely uninterested; the only thing you can do is ask “Why?” Why are students less interested when it comes to math? Could it be the variables that are added as their school career progresses? Or does the process become too repetitive and students check out? There are dozens of questions you can construct when you encounter this very moment, but the question still remains—“Why?”

To further test this looming question, I interviewed a few people living in the North Philadelphia area. Sheena, who is a mother of two, said “It’s a different method of how they do things.” After asking a few more parents, they all seem to come to the exact same conclusion as Sheena. I then talked to Sheena’s son, Tymir, who is 13 and has trouble with math; when I asked him why he did not like math, his answer was simple—“it’s boring.” After his answer, I began to wonder if the traditional teaching method still works. Can teachers going up to a board and demonstrating the problem be the only way students learn? I wanted to see if someone older had a similar experience, when it comes to math. Marlicia—16,  who attends a cyber school, says “It’s just really hard for me to grasp.” So, what can be done to create a better love for math?

I asked Sheena her opinion of making math better, she said, “I think it should be explained better. Even if they have to teach the ‘old way,’ have them do that instead of having them be unsuccessful.” Tymir, however, wanted the complete opposite and thought that math games would be more efficient in his learning. Do you believe games incorporated in their daily math lessons would help them retain the lessons better? Or, is the traditional teaching method still the way to go? These are questions that the students should be asked since they are the ones that have to continue to make it through school. As a community, we have to make sure that children prosper in the best way possible and to continue to secure their future, moving forward.



Alex Alford

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