ERIC Number: ED214619
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1981-Apr
Reference Count: 0
Combatting Math Anxiety While Building Basic Skills: There is Time for Both.
Lasher, Ann M.
Reducing math anxiety and building basic mathematical skills should not be treated as separate processes, but can and should be undertaken simultaneously. To do so requires a positive attitude on the part of the instructor; the establishment of an atmosphere in the classroom that encourages learning; and the instructor's awareness of different student learning styles (i.e., the differences between tactile, visual, and auditory learners). Dealing with math anxiety in traditional classes involves three stages. The first stage is to recognize the problem of math anxiety and bring it out into the open. Students can be encouraged to explore their attitudes about mathematics through math autobiographies and discussions centered on positive and negative statements about math. The second stage involves looking at mathematics in disguise, by, for example, considering math problems found in newspapers or encountered in everyday life. During classroom discussions, specific computational skills, laws, and algorithms can be reviewed, and analytical elements can be addressed. Once students have actually done some computations, instructors can begin building math strategies, the third stage. Tips for working with mathematics can be distributed, discussed, and applied in group work situations. By applying these approaches, teachers can overcome patterns of math avoidance and anxiety in the basic skills classroom. (HB)
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Conference on Remedial and Developmental Mathematics in College: Issues and Innovations (New York, NY, April 9-11, 1981).