Stupidity – Does it hurt?

I stumbled upon this article by Ben Orlin What It Feels Like to Be Bad at Math. I absolutely enjoyed reading it and would like to share it with the GRAD 602 community.

Here is an excerpt as a teaser:

“As a math teacher, it’s easy to get frustrated with struggling students. They miss class. They procrastinate. When you take away their calculators, they moan like children who’ve lost their teddy bears. (Admittedly, a trauma.)

Even worse is what they don’t do. Ask questions. Take notes. Correct failing quizzes, even when promised that corrections will raise their scores. Don’t they care that they’re failing? Are they trying not to pass?

There are plenty of ways to diagnose such behavior. Chalk it up to sloth, disinterest, out-of-school distractions—surely those all play a role. But if you ask me, there’s a more powerful and underlying cause.

Math makes people feel stupid. It hurts to feel stupid.”

(Ben Orlin, 2013)

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