Math is something most young children fear. Math creates this type of anxiety that kids stress, and/or come home crying about. Sometimes that was me…. Throughout elementary we were allowed to use our calculators so ultimately we would just do everything on a calculator for assignments. I felt like I was unprepared for high school. I struggled with math in elementary school because my teachers tended to teach it one way and not show multiple ways to get the answer. When I got to grade 9 I was in a math class with probably the best teacher I ever had. He was very easy to confront which is necessary for students because if the student is not confident with asking the teacher questions it creates a bad situation where the student is unable to learn to their fullest potential. When I got to grade 11 I was introduced to a not so good teacher. She taught everything one way and actually did not allow you to do the equation or question another way or she would not give you the marks even though you got it right still. She was often never there which is hard for students to have sub teachers in and out and all teaching things differently. I struggled to learn because of that. She also did not allow the use of calculators, therefore, I went from relying so much on my calculator and now not allowed to use it, it was very tough. Students should be given marks for showing their work even when they do not get the right answer, teachers should encourage this. Some students just leave questions blank which is the wrong thing to tell students to do. When showing all their work students could be on the right track, but just end up making a calculation error in the end. My teacher in high school did not give out marks for showing work, it was either right or wrong. Some things I found that math encompasses some sort of discrimination is when it uses names. For example, using unisex names and referring to them as she, her, he, etc can create discrimination within math. When I reached university we learnt indigenous math which was using shapes to count or letters. I found it quite difficult.
From Gale’s lecture there are three ways that Inuit math is learnt differently. One way is how they use symbols like lines, dots, letters. They also use their 5 senses mostly smell rather than their eyes to feel the atmosphere around them. They also rely on their body parts to measure. Another thing is how elders taught math by not teaching math and giving them questions, they would teach in a way that is more student led and allows for more questioning. Teaching math should not be heavily based on content, it should allow for questions and group discussions along with ample amounts of ways of doing things to promote student success. There is never one way to do things, and if students find their own way, you as a teacher should encourage it.