General Discussions > Gender Studies

Mathematics and the Male brain

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Paige:

--- Quote from: T.K.G.W. on March 11, 2016, 01:55:59 pm ---Well it's been proven that if you tell someone they're worse at something than the opposite sex and then run an experiment with people watching to test their performances against the opposite sex, that knowledge undermines confidence and ability. They might have the ability just fine but being told they don't or being told that men can't do this as well as women or women can't do that as well as men causes people to nudge themselves toward the stereotype a little more.

--- End quote ---

So my degree is in math.  I agree with many here it has nothing to do with gender, it has a lot to do with confidence and foundation.  Math is like climbing a ladder, you need every rung on the ladder to be successful and get to the top.  Too often people are convinced they're no good at math because they miss or misunderstood a rung or two along the way.  But if you have confidence you'll be able to fight to understand.  If not, you'll likely assume that you're not good at math.   

With so many people, including teachers falsely believing women are bad at math, that confidence can be very hard to attain if you're female.

I have two daughters, both struggled with math until I sat down and started helping them.  You know what I found out.  Many teachers aren't very good at math.


So here are my suggestions.

1) Look for videos on the topics you're struggling with.   There are a lot of good ones on the internet.
2) Practice those areas you have trouble with.  Math is a lot like learning an instrument.  Practice really helps.
3) Don't be afraid to retrace your steps if there's something you just don't get.  If you have to look at videos for grades below yours do it.  It may just be that missing rung that stops you from success.
4) Remember not everyone struggles with the same concepts.  Some people have trouble with trig, some people have trouble with algebra, some people have trouble with geometry, etc.

Good luck,
Paige :)

jossam:
I've never liked math and was never naturally good at it, but I do okayish if I'm taught well. I can't really say for sure because I've always had bad teachers and the fact I'm not very interested in the subject didn't help motivate me. But when I finally found a good teacher my grades were acceptable.
I think it's just stereotyping though, because the most brilliant math students in my class in high school were cis girls, they were so good that they were separated from the rest of the class during classworks to avoid helping others. I also had a Chinese friend and she was the best math student because as she explained, in her country math is taught a lot and people are encouraged to learn it and they apparently have a good method of teaching math and other scientific subjects, while people in my country are usually bad at scientific subjects because they're not taught very well and we're encouraged to learn things like literature and history. So it's also a cultural thing.

I don't think brain, gender or biological sex has anything to do with it.

KarlMars:

--- Quote from: Deborah on March 10, 2016, 02:21:22 am ---When my daughter was in school I countered that by always telling her that math was easy and not to listen to people who insisted it was hard.  All you have to do is learn the rules.  She ended up getting a math degree in college.  I also told her sports were important just for building a strong body along with a strong mind.  And now she makes a living as a fitness instructor.  So I agree that the message is important when they are young.


Sapere Aude

--- End quote ---

It's a coincidence that I want to be a fitness instructor someday. Did she have to get a bachelor's of science in fitness training?

Deborah:

--- Quote from: alienbodybuilder on March 12, 2016, 07:55:40 am ---It's a coincidence that I want to be a fitness instructor someday. Did she have to get a bachelor's of science in fitness training?

--- End quote ---
No.  She got a math and education degree with the intention of being an elementary school teacher.  But during her student teaching time she discovered she didn't like the job.

She teaches fitness in and helps manage a Barre Studio.  http://barre3.com.  They conduct their own instructor selection and ongoing training in Oregon.  So her bonus with that company is paid trips a couple of times a year.

I do know something about fitness instructing in other gyms though.  Most do not require a degree.  All they require is an online certification.

KarlMars:

--- Quote from: Deborah on March 12, 2016, 08:07:44 am ---No.  She got a math and education degree with the intention of being an elementary school teacher.  But during her student teaching time she discovered she didn't like the job.

She teaches fitness in and helps manage a Barre Studio.  http://barre3.com.  They conduct their own instructor selection and ongoing training in Oregon.  So her bonus with that company is paid trips a couple of times a year.

I do know something about fitness instructing in other gyms though.  Most do not require a degree.  All they require is an online certification.

--- End quote ---

That's good to know. Thanks so much.

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