A Blog by Carnegie Learning
It's amazing how many math myths are out there these days. Believing these myths can lead students (not to mention adults) to believe that math is "too hard," "not for them," or just plain unattainable. That's nonsense!
If asked, most people will tell you they have a learning style – an expressed preference in learning by seeing images, hearing speech, seeing words, or being able to physically interact with the material. Some people even believe that it is the teacher’s job to present the information in accordance with that preference.
Actually, it turns out that the best scientific evidence available does not support learning styles. In other words, when an auditory learner receives instruction about content through a visual model, they do just as well as auditory learners who receive spoken information.
Students may have a preference for visuals or writing or sound, but sticking to their preference doesn't help them learn any better. Far more important is ensuring the student is engaged in an interactive learning activity and that the new information connects to the student’s prior knowledge. #mathmythbusted
Memorize the following rule: All quars are elos. Will you remember that rule tomorrow? Nope. Why not? Because it has no meaning. It isn’t connected to anything you know. What if we change the rule to: All squares are parallelograms. How about now? Can you remember that? Of course you can, because now it makes sense.
Learning does not take place in a vacuum. It must be connected to what you already know. Otherwise, arbitrary rules will be forgotten. #mathmythbusted
Stay tuned for more myth-busting, and the next time you hear a Math Myth like this from a student, parent, or even a friend, make sure you bust it!
Bob Hausmann received his PhD in Cognitive Psychology in 2005 from the University of Pittsburgh, and received additional training as a post-doctoral fellow at the Pittsburgh Science of Learning Center (PSLC). Bob publishes a blog entitled Dr. Bob's Cog Blog, and is the author of Cognitive Science for Educators: Practical suggestions for an evidence-based classroom. The unifying theme that runs throughout all of these activities is a drive toward helping every student become an expert in a domain of her or his choice.Explore more related to this author
Amy Jones Lewis taught in the Baltimore City Public Schools system, where she helped found a new innovation high school as part of a Gates Foundation Grant, taught with Carnegie Learning instructional materials, and increased student state test scores to twice the district average. Since then, she's spent 12 years deepening teachers’ content knowledge, assisting in the implementation of student-centered instructional strategies, and transitioning schools and teachers to the Standards for Mathematical Practice. As Director of Instructional Design, she incorporates her classroom expertise and mathematical content knowledge in the creation of innovative and student-centered instructional materials for teachers and students.Explore more related to this author