School makes me hate math

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Fledermen64
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School makes me hate math

Postby Fledermen64 » Tue Sep 29, 2009 12:41 am UTC

So this is the first semester since grade school that I haven't had a pure math based course in my curriculum (error with sign up system prevented me from getting in diff eq.) I still have math in my courses being an engineering student. But its applied and i enjoy that type of thing. But Ive been finding the oddest thing lately. I enjoy doing math again. Im not sure when the transition occurred precisely but it was certainly this semester as Ive started doing math for fun. Are there any others out there that like math but hate math classes enough to make you hate math?
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Re: School makes me hate math

Postby Kow » Tue Sep 29, 2009 7:44 am UTC

I hated math classes until I got into college. So far I've enjoyed every one I've had.
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Re: School makes me hate math

Postby Ixtellor » Tue Sep 29, 2009 1:44 pm UTC

It seems to me, Math is one of those subjects where the teacher is going to determine if you enjoy or hate it.
It is very easy to be a boring Math teacher.

It is a lot harder to be an entertaining and fun math teacher than say a History teacher. I also find that at the college level, Math professors tend to be more wonkish and less enthusiastic, but thats just anecdotal and perhaps I just got unlucky in college.

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Re: School makes me hate math

Postby Fledermen64 » Tue Sep 29, 2009 3:41 pm UTC

Actually all of my professors have been very, very good other than two, and i didnt dislike the classes to much. So i don't think that's it. I mean i just find myself doing math for no reason in my spare time for fun these days when i wouldn't have dreamed of doing it even just over the last summer. Surely someone else has experienced this.
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Re: School makes me hate math

Postby Ixtellor » Tue Sep 29, 2009 4:49 pm UTC

Fledermen64 wrote:Actually all of my professors have been very, very good other than two, and i didnt dislike the classes to much. So i don't think that's it. I mean i just find myself doing math for no reason in my spare time for fun these days when i wouldn't have dreamed of doing it even just over the last summer. Surely someone else has experienced this.


Did you experience some "AHH HA" moment where you made the connection between math and the world around you?
Where one day math is just an abstract subject and then suddenly you see the real world application?

Just a thought. This is what Karl Marx and macroeconomics did for me, Where I stopped seeing GDP deflators as abstract busy work, and saw instead human motivation and action as directly related to these boring equations.

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Re: School makes me hate math

Postby Fledermen64 » Tue Sep 29, 2009 10:00 pm UTC

Nope I've always been pretty good at figuring out where what i was learning could be applied. I just wasn't interested in doing it outside of class. Maybe I associated it with the pressures of keeping up grades for a scholarship and now that that pressure is temporarily relived from math the association is broken.
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Re: School makes me hate math

Postby etotheix » Wed Sep 30, 2009 2:21 am UTC

This depends a good deal on what the "Math" is. I mostly enjoyed Calc BC, Diffy Q was a blast, and Multivariable is awesome. That said, I HATED LIN ALG. I don't mind the applied linear algebra, I think that's pretty neat, and I know that has oodles of applications. But proving that the moon is a vector space or memorizing the field axioms? I'd rather be napping... (also, doing Gauss-Jordan elimination by hand is one of the cruelest methods of torture devised by man)

One of my friends from high school plays with number theory in his spare time. I also don't get that.

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Re: School makes me hate math

Postby Ixtellor » Wed Sep 30, 2009 4:20 pm UTC

etotheix wrote:This depends a good deal on what the "Math" is. I mostly enjoyed Calc BC, Diffy Q was a blast, and Multivariable is awesome. That said, I HATED LIN ALG. I don't mind the applied linear algebra, I think that's pretty neat, and I know that has oodles of applications. But proving that the moon is a vector space or memorizing the field axioms? I'd rather be napping... (also, doing Gauss-Jordan elimination by hand is one of the cruelest methods of torture devised by man)

One of my friends from high school plays with number theory in his spare time. I also don't get that.


Yea, geometric proofs almost killed my love of math. In college it was derivatives that made me go liberal arts.

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Re: School makes me hate math

Postby achan1058 » Wed Sep 30, 2009 5:42 pm UTC

etotheix wrote:This depends a good deal on what the "Math" is. I mostly enjoyed Calc BC, Diffy Q was a blast, and Multivariable is awesome. That said, I HATED LIN ALG. I don't mind the applied linear algebra, I think that's pretty neat, and I know that has oodles of applications. But proving that the moon is a vector space or memorizing the field axioms? I'd rather be napping... (also, doing Gauss-Jordan elimination by hand is one of the cruelest methods of torture devised by man)
Memorize field axioms? They are simply intuitive and don't need to memorized. Basically, it says that things work as nicely as rational/real/complex numbers. A lot of those algebra definitions are like that, basically characterizing how nicely thing work. Like, is it as good as rational numbers? Is it as good as integers? Is it as good as matrices? Or is it as ugly as hell that it evades all intuitive concepts?

As for Gauss-Jordan, it's definitely up there in terms of methods of torture. What's worse, however, is grading 50 other people doing Gauss-Jordan, with 1/2 the class doing it wrong......

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Re: School makes me hate math

Postby Internetmeme » Fri Oct 02, 2009 12:51 am UTC

We're actually starting to get into fun stuff in Algebra II now. We're learning about i and the Quadratic Formula now, and next chapter we do logarithms.

It's like this:
Up until now, it's been "Do this, do it this way."
Now its: "Do this. Just get the right answer."

I just love the options now!

I actually spent a few days trying to derive the Quadratic Formula from Standard Form (Ax2+Bx+C) but I couldn't figure it out. It's a small puzzle I do from time to time. I have only ever managed to get one of the parabola intersects, though. I have to figure out how to work in a square root!
Spoiler:

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Re: School makes me hate math

Postby achan1058 » Fri Oct 02, 2009 2:27 am UTC

Internetmeme wrote:I actually spent a few days trying to derive the Quadratic Formula from Standard Form (Ax2+Bx+C) but I couldn't figure it out. It's a small puzzle I do from time to time. I have only ever managed to get one of the parabola intersects, though. I have to figure out how to work in a square root!
Just complete the square.

And yes, I recall some teachers saying do this with method X, and that with method Y, etc. It didn't bothered me much though since I have been learning stuff from outside.

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Re: School makes me hate math

Postby Internetmeme » Sat Oct 03, 2009 12:16 pm UTC

achan1058 wrote:
Internetmeme wrote:I actually spent a few days trying to derive the Quadratic Formula from Standard Form (Ax2+Bx+C) but I couldn't figure it out. It's a small puzzle I do from time to time. I have only ever managed to get one of the parabola intersects, though. I have to figure out how to work in a square root!
Just complete the square.

And yes, I recall some teachers saying do this with method X, and that with method Y, etc. It didn't bothered me much though since I have been learning stuff from outside.

Didn't think about completing the square, thanks!


Also, the only time that I've ever my Algebra II teacher saying "Do it THIS way" has been on the test or homework when she needs to know that we know how to do that particular method.
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Re: School makes me hate math

Postby The EGE » Sun Oct 04, 2009 4:30 pm UTC

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Re: School makes me hate math

Postby Lemminkainen » Wed Oct 07, 2009 3:35 am UTC

etotheix wrote:This depends a good deal on what the "Math" is. I mostly enjoyed Calc BC, Diffy Q was a blast, and Multivariable is awesome. That said, I HATED LIN ALG. I don't mind the applied linear algebra, I think that's pretty neat, and I know that has oodles of applications. But proving that the moon is a vector space or memorizing the field axioms? I'd rather be napping... (also, doing Gauss-Jordan elimination by hand is one of the cruelest methods of torture devised by man)

One of my friends from high school plays with number theory in his spare time. I also don't get that.


Really? My mathematical preferences run the other way... I mean, I was quite fond of the calculuses, but DifEq bored me somewhat. At the moment, I'm taking a LinAlg course, which I guess is the first real mathematics course I have ever taken, and I love it. I'm finding myself to be far more fond of proving statements about vector spaces from the axioms than taking derivatives or using an algorithm to solve a homogeneous equation. Of course, this dichotomy is likely really caused by a split in interests (derivation versus application) than anything else.

Edit: Also, I'm pretty fond of my mathematics teachers in college. The one who teaches my proof-based multivar course is a badass who will always have a more elegant way to prove things than you do, and is also a really nice guy to boot and the one who teaches LinAlg is a lovable eccentric who talks about what aliens would think of our matrix notation.

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Re: School makes me hate math

Postby sleeply » Thu Oct 08, 2009 8:38 pm UTC


I read this article, and I was quite interested by the ideas expressed within it. Now I understand why my geometry teacher gave us little diagrams and asked us to try and form our own conjectures all of the time. I really wish that more schools would teach math that way. :(
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Re: School makes me hate math

Postby Captain_Thunder » Fri Oct 09, 2009 12:41 am UTC

Ixtellor wrote:
Fledermen64 wrote:Actually all of my professors have been very, very good other than two, and i didnt dislike the classes to much. So i don't think that's it. I mean i just find myself doing math for no reason in my spare time for fun these days when i wouldn't have dreamed of doing it even just over the last summer. Surely someone else has experienced this.


Did you experience some "AHH HA" moment where you made the connection between math and the world around you?
Where one day math is just an abstract subject and then suddenly you see the real world application?


I didn't start to really love math until I saw the disconnection between math and the world around me; but YMMV.

Oh, and:


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Re: School makes me hate math

Postby BlazeOrangeDeer » Fri Oct 09, 2009 5:05 am UTC

I couldn't agree more with Lockhart's Lament. That is why I love math team (or at least the competitions, not the practices); I get to figure stuff out by myself. On a related note, I just spent an hour reading that pdf and haven't started my math homework ;)

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Re: School makes me hate math

Postby BSamuels » Sat Oct 10, 2009 3:46 am UTC

Ever since I learned it when I was 8, I always found long division to be fun.

At the end of tests I would be sad that there were no more problems.

Did this happen to anyone else?
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Re: School makes me hate math

Postby Secateurs » Sat Oct 10, 2009 9:51 am UTC

I spent about the same amount of time reading Lockhart's Lament, but when I was supposed to be doing a maths revision exam :S
BSamuels wrote:Ever since I learned it when I was 8, I always found long division to be fun.

At the end of tests I would be sad that there were no more problems.

Did this happen to anyone else?

I never learnt long division formally, just little bits here and there. Consequently, I have no idea how to do it :P
But I have experienced the end of test feeling where you turn over a page to find a 'this page has been left blank' notice, and you silently wish you had something else to do for the remainder of the time.

In regard to the OP, I'm taking two maths classes; one which has a fantastic teacher and deals with more advanced stuff, and another where the teacher is... not so fantastic (hilarious, but not great at teaching) with stuff like stats and calculus. Now, the first class I love. The second class is ok, but I now DETEST stats with a passion. I used to feel ok about it. Not anymore.
And I'm averaging 3% higher on the advanced class.
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Re: School makes me hate math

Postby sleeply » Sun Oct 11, 2009 12:58 am UTC

BSamuels wrote:Ever since I learned it when I was 8, I always found long division to be fun.

At the end of tests I would be sad that there were no more problems.

Did this happen to anyone else?

I was quite sad at the end of geometry tests last year. This year, I find myself a bit sad when I finish my algebra tests and I have a lot of extra time left. :(
Last edited by sleeply on Tue Oct 27, 2009 10:52 pm UTC, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: School makes me hate math

Postby Internetmeme » Sun Oct 11, 2009 2:09 am UTC

To alleviate bordeom, I'll just program in the formulas into my calculator to both make it quicker and to give me an excersize in basic programming.
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Re: School makes me hate math

Postby Kow » Sun Oct 11, 2009 10:15 pm UTC

I usually just sleep after a test o.0 I'm almost always the first one done, esp on maths, though my current group of friends at school now are way smarter than HS classmates, so it's about even most of the time.


I did put the quadratic formula into my calc though. Makes all of those so much easier :D
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Re: School makes me hate math

Postby Internetmeme » Wed Oct 14, 2009 9:05 pm UTC

These are the ones I have put in:
-Quadratic Formula
-Distance Formula
-Slope Formula
-Pythagorean Theorem (redundant as of Trig)
-Parabola Axis of Symmetry finder
-Area of most 2d and 3d shapes (very incomplete/non-working most likely. Going through the code I noticed a few blank spots.)
-Measure of a circle's arc
-Compound Interest
-Cylinder Area
-Fibonacci Sequence finder (find the nth number of the Fibonacci sequence, such as the 4th number is 5)
-Linear Regression (mainly a button-pressing saver, it's already built into the calculator)
-Midpoint formula for graphs and number lines
-Password program (currently being revamp'd to allow letters instead of numbers by assigning numerical values to each letter. Simply insert program name into a program and viola! It even automatically locks out infinite-loop-style after a set number of bad entries.)
-Dice roll (random number picker)
-Schrodinger ("random" number generator, will pick either 1 or 2 and display it, rinses and repeats)
-Percanta (Example: 14/49 is x/100, finds the percent a given fraction is. Mainly a handwriting-saver)
-Spell ("Sub-program" for Password. Assigns the numbers to numerical values. Made separate so I could define the alphabet for any given program, such as a command like "ATTACK" for a game if I decide to write it)
-Trig (Trig functions, such as the Law of Cosines, Law of Sines, Pythagorean Theorem, and Geometric Mean)

As you can see, I love programming.

EDIT: Wow, I failed at the Fibonacci thing, and I just realized it. Corrected!
Last edited by Internetmeme on Sun Nov 08, 2009 7:02 pm UTC, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: School makes me hate math

Postby Kow » Thu Oct 15, 2009 8:48 am UTC

I could never really get into actual programming on those things. I wasn't able to find a guide in the only times I've used them.
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Re: School makes me hate math

Postby porcupine » Fri Oct 16, 2009 6:12 pm UTC

I always had more fun in high school writing programs to solve equations then I did with the course work itself. One of my teachers did teach some basic programming, it was just a way to make animations on TI graphing calcs, but at least it was something. I remember people thinking I went a little overboard on mine though. :lol:

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Re: School makes me hate math

Postby Internetmeme » Fri Oct 16, 2009 9:12 pm UTC

porcupine wrote:I always had more fun in high school writing programs to solve equations then I did with the course work itself. One of my teachers did teach some basic programming, it was just a way to make animations on TI graphing calcs, but at least it was something. I remember people thinking I went a little overboard on mine though. :¡This cheese is burning me!:

What did you program?

I would've programmed in a fractal. :lol:
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Re: School makes me hate math

Postby NoodleIncident » Tue Oct 27, 2009 9:18 pm UTC

I already have. 8) The triforce looking one that no one can spell.
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Re: School makes me hate math

Postby BlazeOrangeDeer » Sun Nov 01, 2009 5:09 am UTC

SIERPINSKI!!! right?

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Re: School makes me hate math

Postby faran298p » Tue Nov 03, 2009 5:48 pm UTC

If people do not believe that mathematics is simple, it is only because they do not realize how complicated life is.

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Re: School makes me hate math

Postby modularblues » Sun Nov 08, 2009 1:18 pm UTC

faran298p wrote:If people do not believe that mathematics is simple, it is only because they do not realize how complicated life is.


Very true.

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Re: School makes me hate math

Postby modularblues » Sun Nov 08, 2009 1:23 pm UTC

achan1058 wrote:
etotheix wrote:This depends a good deal on what the "Math" is. I mostly enjoyed Calc BC, Diffy Q was a blast, and Multivariable is awesome. That said, I HATED LIN ALG. I don't mind the applied linear algebra, I think that's pretty neat, and I know that has oodles of applications. But proving that the moon is a vector space or memorizing the field axioms? I'd rather be napping... (also, doing Gauss-Jordan elimination by hand is one of the cruelest methods of torture devised by man)

Memorize field axioms? They are simply intuitive and don't need to memorized. Basically, it says that things work as nicely as rational/real/complex numbers. A lot of those algebra definitions are like that, basically characterizing how nicely thing work. Like, is it as good as rational numbers? Is it as good as integers? Is it as good as matrices? Or is it as ugly as hell that it evades all intuitive concepts?

As for Gauss-Jordan, it's definitely up there in terms of methods of torture. What's worse, however, is grading 50 other people doing Gauss-Jordan, with 1/2 the class doing it wrong......

Proving the moon is a vector space? That's new :P One of my research advisors obviously never took linear algebra... couldn't understand what a vector space is and accused me of not explaining my thesis concepts well. My mistake was assuming that engineering PhDs (especially ones from certain schools) all know what a vector space is...

Marking homeworks on Gauss-Jordan sounds like a dirty TA job - sorry to hear achan1058.

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Re: School makes me hate math

Postby Internetmeme » Sun Nov 08, 2009 7:04 pm UTC

NoodleIncident wrote:I already have. 8) The triforce looking one that no one can spell.

How did you do that? I only know how to program using text. I have not figured out how to use the graphing part of the whole programming scheme.
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Re: School makes me hate math

Postby modularblues » Sun Nov 08, 2009 8:01 pm UTC

Internetmeme wrote:
NoodleIncident wrote:I already have. 8) The triforce looking one that no one can spell.

How did you do that? I only know how to program using text. I have not figured out how to use the graphing part of the whole programming scheme.

Some example code here.

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Re: School makes me hate math

Postby You, sir, name? » Tue Nov 17, 2009 1:01 pm UTC

Internetmeme wrote:I would've programmed in a fractal. :lol:


When I was bored and waiting for some TA that was late as hell for some lab in physics (can't for the life of me remember what it was about, and it's not really relevant), I wrote a mandelbrot generator in TI-Basic. Even though it only generated a black/white bitmask, it was slow as hell. But it was a fun diversion. It was really the only program I wrote on my calculator. ... in fact, I really never use it. You use so many approximations in getting to the answer in the first place that an exact value is utterly pointless.
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Re: School makes me hate math

Postby Mo-velocipede » Wed Nov 18, 2009 12:57 am UTC

I'm still in high school, and I hate math with every fiber of my being. I do hope that this will change, and I'm by no means bad at math-- I'm a very logic-oriented person, I love figuring out equations and found the equation for the grading curve when we had a new history teacher etc., got a perfect score on the pre-ACT (PLAN) in math, and continue to ace my Honors Algebra II/trig tests without doing my homework, among other things. None of these make the fifty minutes of busy work assigned each day bearable.

Lockhart's lament was heartening in a way, but I'm afraid it will only breed more contempt for my math teacher. Math is the only class I ever fall asleep in or cut. There is nothing that will keep it interesting, and testing into higher levels doesn't work either-I still need to know terminology before I can move up. Right now I have a B- in math (despite A after A on the tests) and I'm sure the fellow nerds on this site feel my pain.

I had hoped that math would be more bearable in a few years when I hit college, but I'm losing that hope.

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Re: School makes me hate math

Postby GrantSolar » Wed Nov 18, 2009 10:25 pm UTC

I'm in my second year of College (I'm 18 years old, just to clear up any education system confusion) and, yeah there can be dull bits of maths but we've reached the stage where we have the knowledge to solve questions in several different ways and are encouraged (with help, of course) to derive aspects of modern maths. I suppose it helps that my Further Maths teacher is almost in love with Maths (It really rubs off on you!)

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Re: School makes me hate math

Postby TheDarkshineKnight » Mon Dec 07, 2009 8:38 pm UTC

achan1058 wrote:
etotheix wrote:This depends a good deal on what the "Math" is. I mostly enjoyed Calc BC, Diffy Q was a blast, and Multivariable is awesome. That said, I HATED LIN ALG. I don't mind the applied linear algebra, I think that's pretty neat, and I know that has oodles of applications. But proving that the moon is a vector space or memorizing the field axioms? I'd rather be napping... (also, doing Gauss-Jordan elimination by hand is one of the cruelest methods of torture devised by man)
Memorize field axioms? They are simply intuitive and don't need to memorized. Basically, it says that things work as nicely as rational/real/complex numbers. A lot of those algebra definitions are like that, basically characterizing how nicely thing work. Like, is it as good as rational numbers? Is it as good as integers? Is it as good as matrices? Or is it as ugly as hell that it evades all intuitive concepts?

As for Gauss-Jordan, it's definitely up there in terms of methods of torture. What's worse, however, is grading 50 other people doing Gauss-Jordan, with 1/2 the class doing it wrong......


What's worse is trying to find a specific graph with a very specific property derived from its associated matrix, so you had to do Gauss-Jordan for the associated matrices of approximately 1100 graphs. >_<

EDIT: And I had to do this by hand because computers like to divide out non-1 integers while doing row-reduction. I needed to see the non-1 integers to find the property I was looking for.

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Re: School makes me hate math

Postby Ventanator » Fri Dec 11, 2009 12:38 pm UTC

Ugh, math is a love hate relationship. While in my actual math class (geometry) I hate it. Everything is just so...I don't know how to describe it. Whenever we learn something new, I'll figure it out and feel happy for a few minutes. The happiness slowly seeps away as I realize that I now have to do that every day for the next six months. Because of that, I always program my calculator to do everything that I can make it do. The only problems that I actually have to do anymore are the ones that involve nothing but variables, and when I get a 89 I won't even have those anymore. I guess it's the boredom in those classes that gets me.

Two hours later though, I enter physics. In there we do a lot of math, but it is just different somehow. It's more...well...it's not really more challenging. It's much simpler stuff. The only real difference is that I have to think about it, and it's obviously being applied to something. In geometry, I can (usually) see where this could be useful, but (usually) don't see myself ever using it. Physics' math is different though. I like just sitting around a playing with it.

I know that it's probably just that I like science more, but my math class v. the math in my science class is no comparison.

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Re: School makes me hate math

Postby Peon » Wed Dec 30, 2009 9:50 pm UTC


I just want you to know I thought that was amazing.

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Kow
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Re: School makes me hate math

Postby Kow » Thu Dec 31, 2009 6:10 pm UTC

Mo-velocipede wrote:I'm still in high school, and I hate math with every fiber of my being. I do hope that this will change, and I'm by no means bad at math-- I'm a very logic-oriented person, I love figuring out equations and found the equation for the grading curve when we had a new history teacher etc., got a perfect score on the pre-ACT (PLAN) in math, and continue to ace my Honors Algebra II/trig tests without doing my homework, among other things. None of these make the fifty minutes of busy work assigned each day bearable.

I had hoped that math would be more bearable in a few years when I hit college, but I'm losing that hope.

I'm practically the same way. I would say I'm pretty good at math but I hate the way maths taught in school. Over half my math classes were passed because of the constant As on tests making up for the line of 0s on homework and often other work too.

And in my experience, math is a lot better in college. However, its largely based on the teacher, like high school. The difference is that, on average, college professors have more leeway in their curriculum.
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