Unit 1.1 – First Impressions

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    Allison Mino

    Personally, I believe that I never had the most difficult relationship with math, but I definitely still struggled. As I reflect, I acknowledge that I enjoyed the struggle that I had with math. It served as a challenge and I would feel extremely satisfied when I would solve a problem and understand the material to solve future problems. After learning about the five Math Minds principles, I did in fact find that I was able to resonate with them, especially with my current views of teaching and learning math. For instance, I was especially able to resonate with principle 2 which is “brains are plastic” and principle 4, which is “minds are attuned to change”. Learning about these principles encouraged reflection as it reminded me of my past with learning mathematics throughout my elementary/ high school years. To elaborate, when being presented with a problem that I could not understand or solve, I would tell myself that I just did not have a “math brain”. After much practice, I found that I was eventually able to solve the math problems that I struggled with and it almost became easy to me. From this, I was able to firsthand experience how brains are plastic and that minds are attuned to change. This is important to me because as a future educator, if my students experience similar struggles, I will be motivated to drive that change in their ability to solve math problems and to reduced struggle. I did not find that the principles challenged my views in any ways. These principles allowed me to think that the ability to do math as a student and teach math as a teacher is both very possible and achievable!

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