Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Math Anxiety...brain research is telling!

Check out this article in the Washington Post today...
Math problems make more than a few students — and even teachers — sweat, but new brain research is providing insights into the earliest causes of the anxiety so often associated with mathematics.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/national/researchers-say-math-anxiety-starts-young/2011/05/16/AG3YqxEH_story_1.html




Anxiety can literally cut off the working memory needed to learn and to solve problems, according to Judy Willis, a Santa Barbara, Calif.-based neurologist, former middle school teacher and author

Eugene A. Geist, an associate professor at Ohio University and the author of “Children Are Born Mathematicians,” works with math teachers to create “anxiety-free classrooms” for students. He advises teachers to have students focus on learning mathematics processes, rather than relying on the answer keys in a textbook, which can undermine both their own and the teacher’s confidence in their math skills.



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