Saturday, April 30, 2011

Learning as a parent

I have a two year old and she is too often my teacher. I learn more about myself through our interactions than through hours of teaching. At the moment she is going through a "wake up at four" phase, waking up screaming (thus the 5am blog). Normally, I'm tired and half awake so I bring her in with us. Being on holidays, I sat with her and after much screaming of "big bed" she let me give her a cuddle and said "scared daddy". So I sat with her on the chair in her room, closed the cupboard door and she fell asleep in my arms.

I wonder how many times a student has felt scared of a new Maths topic and I have gone into autopilot and shortcut the issue by providing a question specific solution that does not generalise for the elementary problem. Rather than giving the answer, I should allow a student to elucidate what the issue is and then provide abstract tools to prevent it happening again. Time notwithstanding, I think this is what maths should be more about.

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