Are you not good in mathematics? Do not give up!
If you think that you are not good in maths, if you believe that you are not capable to achieve anything, if you feel that you are a lively failure, do not give up yet! Read first what Jo Boaler and her team from Stanford University have to say about students failing in maths, dropping self-esteem and ready to give up.
[youtube height=”300″ width=”600″]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bxrPy1fjVU4[/youtube]
First: Jo Boaler writes that “Many people think that some students can work to high levels and some cannot because of the brains they are born with, but this idea has been resoundingly disproved. Study after study has shown the incredible capacity of brains to grow and change within a remarkably short period of time”.
Second: According to a recent study of psychologist Jason Moser “the brain sparks and grows when we make a mistake, even if we are not aware of it, because it is a time of struggle; the brain is challenged and the challenge results in growth“. This finding is fascinating and is hugely relevant for teachers and parents. If considered seriously, it should open a new vision of education as well as in problem solving.
Third: “When You Believe In Yourself Your Brain Operates Differently“, this statement -also from Jo Boaler- means that you should believe that failures are part of life. When you fail, you should not be negative toward yourself but find in yourself the belief that youu can do it.
When you believe in your potential, you can engage your individual resources to strive for excellence and achieve what seemed to be impossible.
Various studies proved this statement and Jo quotes the findings of Carol Dweck to encourage students to grow their mindset and not to be trapped in negative thoughts: I can’t do it, I am not able to do it… “individuals with a growth mindset had a greater awareness of errors than individuals with a fixed mindset, so they were more likely to go back and correct their mistakes”
See? Maths is the subject that put everyone on trial: students and teachers. I was very lucky to have a passionated maths teacher who carried her whole class just with her enthusiasm for mathematics and professional skills. Some of us learnt more, some learnt less: she never wanted to drop one of her students and did lead the class up to the A-Levels (or the equivalent in Italy). I inherited from her -so, not from scientific researches- the same belief that you can do it!
Do you want to read more about Jo Boaler and her team? She is “Stanford Professor of Mathematics Education, Online Course Experimenter, Co-Founder of Youcubed, author of the new book: Mathematical Mindsets“. You may be interested to visit her website: www.youcubed.org: If you register on her website, you can also access other material that can be very helpful for maths teachers and parents.
As I have been -and am- engaged with the Steiner education, I feel particularly pleased that the mainstream is opening doors to new visions of education. Not everything is dark ahead. There are bright sparks and creative opportunities in front of us: if we only grow our mindset!
2nd November 2020
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