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Why does everyone hate math?

Going to school (as I do on a daily basis), you see tons of different people with different interests (as I imagine you would in most situations). So everyday I see my friends, acquaintances, colleagues, and everyone else in my grade, and the vast majority of them just don't like math. I just want to know why. Personally I love math, like all caps LOVE math, but I just can't get why it's just decided that no one is going to like math. Of all of the subjects to hate, why does everyone gravitate towards math? Is it just that it's taught badly (which I could very easily see), does everyone just see it as useless to know that x=2 when 12x+7=31, or is it that you just went with the crowd? But for all you math haters, why? And if you don't hate math like me, what made you go against everyone else?

Topics: education math

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  • Mar 7 2013: Most math teachers should be put against a wall and shot. I have wanted to say that since Grade 10 and it felt great.
    Math is taught badly at all levels (including first year university) with no connection to the real world attempted usually.
    Math as an abstract language is best left to those few who see math this way and for the later grades. For the majority of us, math should be seen as a tool for breaking down problems and searching for answers.
    Sir Kenneth Robinson summed it up succinctly when he said that the final target of learning math should not be calculus, it should be statistics.
    • Mar 7 2013: I agree that math should be taught in a way that demonstrates it as a great tool for solving science problems (or any other problem really). I disagree where you say that the pure abstract math should be left out of most people's curriculum. I believe that math should be taught in a more abstract sense. Math shouldn't just be considered a tool, it's also an art. Student's, I think, should be taught to see math just the way they see band class or art class. It's not that math should just be taught as a tool, or just taught as a way of thinking, I think it should be taught as both, but just not in the same class.
      • Mar 8 2013: Ah but it is not.
        In band, it is important for the student to start playing music early. Not just to study chords, key signatures, obtuse italian phrases and scales. As well as exercises, there are studies, chorals, arranged pieces for different sized groups, etc. And good music as well. Nobody likes variations on the Carnival of Venice.
        Art as well is not just the study of color, painting techniques, brush strokes and perspective. People study form and composition by doing.
        But in math, for some reason, we have a reluctance to see math in the real world and sequester it in an ivory tower. It is the language of the universe and can be used to describe everything that I can think of. But not everyone is capable of such lofty heights.
        And rather have everyone try and most fail, I would suggest that setting a goal of having everyone understand how everyday processes can be better understood using math would be the foundation that is required in a democratic society.
        I use that last term because I believe that a democratic society requires an informed population who can read a budget, understand a mortgage and realize when someone is using statistics to get their own way.

        I, personally, spent more time attempting to learn the proof to the chain rule (calculus) than I care to recall. And I didn't spend near enough time on geometry or statistics (until I had to go and learn them on my own)

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