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maths makes my head hurt

(20 Posts)
NancysGarden Fri 07-Aug-09 23:00:27

why is it so hard? Trying to gen up before I start GTP in September and it hurts. I feel queasy. I had previously thought my maths wasn't too bad. Hmmm, think again Nancy.

moffat Fri 07-Aug-09 23:06:03

Now I'm worried, I start PGCE this Sep.

Ninkynork Fri 07-Aug-09 23:07:23

I used to think that even after I qualified as a teacher in 1993.

I thought I was struggling but when the National Numeracy Strategy came out, the progression and examples made it all seem very easy and I discovered that I knew more than I had previously thought.

Is it online somewhere?

NancysGarden Fri 07-Aug-09 23:08:09

Oh I am sorry. I'm sure you'll be fine. What level maths do you have and how long ago? I have a "c" at GCSE from 16 years ago. Sadly I insisted at going down a stream to the middlers and was only ever going to get a C at best: I think I simply missed a lot of the material.

NancysGarden Fri 07-Aug-09 23:09:56

It is I am practising the tests on Learning Matters Onling (select education, select subject and pedagogical knowledge self-tests, then maths). The other 3 audits are high level but don't make me sweat. This one brings me out in mild panic.

IsItMeOr Sat 08-Aug-09 10:00:56

Sending you calm vibes Nancy. My dad, who is a whizz at all things mathematical, always told us that the secret is to do lots and lots of examples (i.e. lots of sums! But "zamples" was a family catchphrase smile). It really does work.

Best of luck with your GTP.

NancysGarden Sat 08-Aug-09 10:22:35

Thank you I'm sure you're absolutely right. Have just bought Primary Maths and will just have to teach myself and yes lots of examples! (My dear Dad was also a maths whizz but was never able to simplify things enough for me to understand. And sadly I didn't inherit any of it...)

IsItMeOr Sat 08-Aug-09 10:27:13

But I'm sure you therefore know that those who find it harder to do something themselves tend to be the better teachers grin.

edam Sat 08-Aug-09 10:32:03

Odd, isn't it, that maths makes so many people anxious? Wonder why that is. Maybe it's because we don't use much beyond basic arithmetic in real life - and don't have too much call for that now we all have calculators and supermarkets use bar codes.

Anyway, Isitme is right, if you have to work hard at a subject, you will have a greater understanding of students who also find it baffling at first. And, I suspect, by the time you come to teach it you will have made sure you have a very thorough grounding. smile

NancysGarden Sat 08-Aug-09 10:42:28

True...grin you have to break things right down to "get" them (if they are challenging to you, as maths is to me) which gives you the insight to teach them to children. Yes, that's definitely made me feel better. (and I like the sound of Numeracy Strategy examples and progression wink

edam Sat 08-Aug-09 11:18:29

Think so. I was naturally quick at maths at school (not so hot now - I think practice makes a huge difference) but not sure I'd have been good at explaining concepts to anyone else. Other kids used to ask me for the answers, don't think anyone asked how to do it on their own. grin

SecretSlattern Sat 08-Aug-09 12:20:16

I agree with practice. Keep doing it and doing it over and over and over and eventually, you will get it.

I did GCSE maths 11 years ago. I was predicted a U (seriously) but got an E and out of all my exam results, that was the one I was most pleased with!

As I am intending to go into teaching within the next 2 years, I have just recently taken GCSE maths again (results, 27th Aug!) and I have been predicted a C and told that had I done the higher tier paper, I had the potential to get a B shock.

I spent as much time working towards my GCSE as I did on my foundation degree because I was so shit at it. If I don't get a C, I will cry but I feel so more confident in it now, that I reckon I could re-sit it without fear or panic.

edam Sat 08-Aug-09 12:27:37

Well done on your predicted grades, Slattern - and good luck for the real thing!

Ripeberry Sat 08-Aug-09 12:38:12

Sometimes if i have a hard sum to do, then i freeze. My mind just goes blank..think i have a mental block. Too many scary maths teachers screaming at me when i was a child sad

blueshoes Sat 08-Aug-09 13:17:07

I got As for maths and further maths for A-levels. Don't recall any of it! But agree that the key is practice practice practice, and then it gets very satisfying.

Math is one subject in which it is not possible to wing it. There is only one right answer. Learning is by way of building blocks. If you skip a step, it does not work. Perhaps that is why it causes anxiety.

NancysGarden Sat 08-Aug-09 13:39:42

I think that's why my best friend loves it so much, there is only one right answer.

Well done slattern for going back to it, and if you do have to re-sit you will be in a better position. Everything crossed for you.

Jux Sat 08-Aug-09 14:20:25

Well, I thought I was good at maths (and I enjoy maths too) but I was crap at that test! I had a look at the english one too - also pretty hard, but not as hard as the maths one.

MuffinToptheMule Sat 08-Aug-09 14:24:59

I took an Access to University Maths course from January to May this year and I failed it. It is the equivalent of a GCSE. I have my resit exam on Monday and I'm completely stuck. I actually think that the part of the brain which does maths is missing in my head. sad. I am so embarrassed by my lack of mathematical ability.

GeneHunt Sat 08-Aug-09 15:07:00

Secret Slattern, are you me? grin I passed my Foundation Degree with Distinction but have certainly put more work into passing the maths GCSE equivalence needed to start teacher training.

To all those struggling, I used a fab book that told me section by section exactly what I needed to know. Here it is.

I am so amazed at the process of learning maths after feeling a thicko all my life that my third year dissertation is all about including all children in early maths learning. I would hate for a child to leave my classroom feeling as inadequate and stupid as I did until I was 40.

NancysGarden Sat 08-Aug-09 18:01:23

If it makes you feel any better muffintop, I too am missing that part of the brain!

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