The IntMath Newsletter - Jan 2007

By Murray Bourne, 15 Jan 2007

You are receiving the IntMath Newsletter either because you signed up, asked a question, wrote a comment or complimented
Interactive Mathematics.

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In this newsletter:
1. This month's math tips
2. What's new
3. From the math blog
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THIS MONTH'S MATH TIPS - Math Anxiety

Do you know someone who suffers from math anxiety?

Maybe the fear of mathematics is partly a result of the 'dumbing down' of the education system (and the media), thus making math inability into a social norm. Ridiculing the math nerd is a favorite sport.

Some thoughts on ways to address the problem:

1. Change the teaching approach from 'Here is the formula, plug in the numbers' to one that involves more 'real-life' problem-solving. This should start before the child even arrives at school. Nothing like some passion and ownership to increase
enjoyment.

2. Girls are just as capable of doing mathematics as boys, but let's make sure they are given space, and encouragement, to go
about it in their preferred ways.

3. Numbers are the building blocks of mathematics. Let's ensure confidence with numbers before we ever venture on to algebra.

4. Why do all the 14 year-olds have to be in the same math classroom at the same time, when their mathematical abilities
and interests are so diverse? Let's be more flexible when it comes to timetabling to ensure better self-pacing.

5. Why does math have to be so serious? Have some fun with it!

WHAT'S NEW on INTERACTIVE MATHEMATICS

REVISIONS
I am in the process of revising all chapters in the site, including rewriting explanations, updating images and making it
more user-friendly.

Recent updates have included these chapters:
Complex Numbers
Applications of Integration
Exponents and Radicals

Let me know if you have any further suggestions for improvement.

LATEST FROM THE BLOG:

1) DISPLACEMENT OR POSITION?
A reader questions the use of "displacement" on some displacement-time graphs.

2) MODELING TSUNAMIS
The wave action of a tsunami can be modeled using a system of coupled partial differential equations.

3) THE NEED FOR FURTHER EXPLORATION
Mathematics is not just about getting the answer in the back of the book.

Enjoy reading

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