Thursday, November 30, 2023
HomeHealthWhat is 'Maths anxiety' and could parents be the cause?

What is ‘Maths anxiety’ and could parents be the cause?

Maths is significant for its effective way of building mental discipline and encouraging logical reasoning, however, with maths-hater’s deeming it “irreleveant”, this attitude overshadows its importance.

As you grow you realise Math permeates many aspects of daily life but with the myth looming over it that “you have to have a certain kind of “brain” to enjoy it and do it well” or “Maths, it is often said, is not for everyone” that puts a daunt in children’s ability to want to learn. 

“The issue lies in our narratives about Maths where we highlight struggle, mistakes, and even anxiety. Maths is about grappling with solving problems and that is good and exciting,” Chief Imagination Officer of STEAM-based NGO Living Maths, Steve Sherman said.

Maths anxiety

Over the years the term “Maths anxiety” has been proliferating and seen in today’s generation of students.

Maths anxiety is defined as a feeling of tension and apprehension that interferes with Maths performance ability, and is caused by time pressure and prior bad math experiences, amongst others.

According to Koa Academy online school, parents who struggled with Maths at school, may have low expectations or stress about their child’s performance in the subject and it is also possible for parents to hand down their own Maths anxiety, making it harder for their children to develop confidence in something their parent failed at.

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Maths education tool

A challenge in Maths education is that progress in the subject is made along particular learning pathways, with each concept building on the one before and if a child does not master a concept, they will have a learning gap that will trip them up time and again.

“This is where the online space becomes really exciting for Maths education.

“Accessing a range of Maths education tools and platforms means that there are multiple ways that concepts can be taught and learnt. If a child can’t understand a Maths concept explained one way, then they can be directed to a different resource that presents the concept in a way that is more understandable to them,” says the Principal and Co-founder of Koa Academy, Mark Anderson. 

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*Compiled by Lethabo Malatsi



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