I have always been the kid that hated math.
I’m pretty sure my dislike started on the day Ms.
Lanzer, my kindergarten teacher, taught us the concept of addition. I would get frustrated
because I would always forget to carry the number over when adding double digits. Fast
forward 10 years to high school, and I was still unenthused at the idea of spending a full hour
and 20 minutes in a math classroom. I started in geometry freshman year and, to be honest,
the only redeeming characteristic of the class was my teacher, Nate. While he gave me the skills
I needed to do well in the class, I mentally refused his offerings and instead, chose to be
Sophomore year, I moved into Algebra II, perhaps the most difficult academic
experience I’ve had in my time at NMH. Now, the hardship I experienced had nothing to do
with the amount of homework, the complexity of the concepts, or my teacher Brandon, who so
graciously dealt with me for four months. It had entirely to do w ith my attitude. I made it
difficult. I went into class practically kicking and screaming, and I exited feeling defeated and
unhappy with myself. Everyday, I coarsely posed the question, “When am I even going to use
math?” The fear of failure and the hatred I had for the subject made me do something
shameful: I didn’t try.
This semester I began precalculus which, for the kid that hates math, should be a complete and
utter nightmare. But it’s not. That’s because before I came back from winter break, I sat down
and decided that I was no longer going to let the difficulty that math presents defeat me. So, I
come into class every day acknowledging that it's not going to be easy, but also knowing that
my attitude decides whether that challenge defines my success.
D.L. Moody once stated that “Faith makes all things possible ... love makes all things easy.”
This is not to say that there aren’t times when it is hard, really hard, to completely love
precalculus, but every challenge we face can only be overcome when we decide not to allow our
egos and bad attitudes get in the way of our learning. It is your attitude that makes the things
you do easy or hard.
Now, I enjoy going into math class and I might not always get it right, but the point is I try.
This is all to say that, you don’t have to love math, but trying to certainly helps.
It is your attitude that makes it hard or easy.
Let us be silent.