“Why do we need to learn this?” is the question that springs up in kids’ minds when they sit to solve a math problem. Well, the question not only arises among the kids, but it is also equally resonated within the math-hating crowd of adults. This article presents an experiment by a trigonometry teacher who successfully eliminated the fear of math among the kids.
The whole experiment began with the teacher reading out one of the Chris Ferrier’s Baby university series that explained the necessity of breaking down a complex problem to simple ones that even a baby can understand. The kids were divided into groups and were given a math problem they were struggling to solve. The group members were encouraged to ask questions and get clarifications so that the ideas became simpler. After a series of discussions and revisions, the children wrote down their understanding. They were then encouraged to create short books using cardstocks and colour pencils.
The activity as a whole was exciting to kids, as they got a new perspective of understanding math problems. Another task given to the kids was to connect the story problems in their textbook to form a bigger story. The experiment was found to be fruitful because kids began enjoying problem-solving as they had applied their perspectives to it. They felt connected with the story problem and thereby increasing their motivation to solve the questions.