Write your own personal “mathematics biography”. Describe your struggles and what or who was helpful to you. This is meant to help you explore your “starting” position.
Lived Experiences Affect/Emotions Thinking Beliefs
- Describe what makes a math class boring or interesting.
- What are your attitudes towards math? What kinds of feelings (for example: competence, shame, awe, anxiety) do you associate with mathematics?What are your math experiences (both good and bad)?
- **What is “math” to you? This could be a definition or a feeling or both.
- What has helped you learn math in the past?
- What year in school was math best and worst for you? What made it a good year in terms of math?
- Was math ever your favorite subject? If so, when was it? What about math made it your favorite? If math has never been your favorite subject, what about it do you not like?
- Sometimes a teacher, grown up, or older child can help you like or understand math better. Did that ever happen to you? If so, tell about it. If not, tell about how that would have made a difference for you.
- Sometimes people can recognize a time when their opinion of math dramatically changed either for the better or the worse. If such a time happened for you or for a friend of yours, tell about it. If you did not experience such a thing, tell about your steady feelings about mathematics.
- Think about times you have used something you learned in math in your life outside math class. List some of those times when you used math outside of school.
- Please comment particularly on your experiences in taking math content courses at the university level. Describe the classroom environment, the role of the teacher and how you participated. If you have not taken any math content courses, please state this and describe what you think it will be like.
- Any other comments/ideas that you have regarding your life and mathematics would be appropriate.