We all face the struggles of math at some point. Sometimes it’s frustrating and the most obvious step doesn’t make any damn sense. If you’re terrified of any math problem and freeze at the thought it, you’re in the right place. Grab some tea and sit down for a story time.
I used to suck at math, and still do to some extent, but at least now I’ve developed the confidence for it. My math fear was a combination of lack of motivation, convincing myself that I was not good at it, and giving up too easily. On top of that, it didn’t help that 90% of my math teachers throughout my life only solidified my feeling of “I’m just stupid in math” with their disappointed looks of expression.
This semester of college, I was able to score my first A in math. I was so excited I told myself I’ll write a blog to help others who are in my previous mathuation (Get it? Math+Situation=Mathuation.)
HERE IS THE GREAT BIG ADVICE OF THE THINGS YOU SHOULD FOCUS ON:
- Calm down – it’s only math. Don’t come to class stressed or think of the many ways you can possibly embarrass yourself. People in that class are mostly as clueless as you are, and they are all there to learn.
- Sit in the front row – I had to sit in the summer session math class for 4 hours. Sitting in the front allows your attention to remain on the professor. If you find yourself daydreaming, quickly snap out of it and tell yourself that you only have one chance to learn, you can always daydream later.
- Do your homework – every day. Actively think of each and every step, explain to yourself out loud. Don’t turn into a machine that produces answers. Know what you’re doing, and try not using your notes when you’re doing homework. If you can do your homework without notes, you’ve learned what you need to do.
- Be present – When you’re in class for a good hour and some minutes, don’t think or do anything other than what you’re supposed to. Class time is learning, outside of that, you can do as you wish.
- Talk to your Professor – Stay behind and ask questions if you aren’t sure about it. It’ll come up on the tests and homework, so might as well just know now. You can also receive great advice, like…
- Create a Math Jar: Basically keeping a few problems from each section, writing it down on paper and folding the little notes into a jar. Pull as many notes as you want every day and you’ll be reviewing previous problems. This will help you study for your final.
- Get in the right mindset – Tell yourself that you are here to learn and get into the receiving mindset. Don’t fill up your mind with doubt of your abilities or other useless stuff. Be a glass half empty. This is really important. Learn, don’t assume.
- Arrive early – Not only to get the front row seat but to get everything you need on your desk. Calm your mind and prepare yourself to learn. Be so into it that you lose track of time – that’s when you know you’re learning.
- ENJOY IT – it’s practically impossible to learn long-term without enjoying it. You need to be curious, you need to WANT to know how to do the math. Make it your goal to be good at something you aren’t good in.
- Lastly, know how to prep for a test.
Dude, suckin’ at something is the first step to being sorta good at something. —Jake, “Adventure Time