Aisling ’21 generally enjoys math, but when her honors math class proved to be difficult, she sought out extra help.
Coming into the school year, I was a little nervous about Math Problem Solving (MPS)2 Honors. I had heard that it was challenging. I worried that maybe I didn't belong at that level.
MPS2 Honors was hard. Math class was kicking my butt. Midterm grades came out, and my parents were not pleased with my grades — neither was I. The thing is, I genuinely enjoy math! Unfortunately, my grade was not reflecting my enthusiasm for the subject. So, heeding my teacher Ms. Montgomery's advice, I started going to evening Math Clinic. Staffed by Peddie math department faculty, Math Clinic provides a collaborative atmosphere where students can receive individual assistance with math courses and/or work together with other students and faculty.
The power of teamwork
Math Clinic is where I began to learn the true power of teamwork. I started working with my peers on my homework and classwork, first in Math Clinic and then on our own. About halfway through the winter term, things starting clicking for me. I got more and more comfortable with asking for help, not just from my peers but from Ms. Montgomery too. I was even allowed to sit in on another math class to gain a different perspective and ask questions.
Math Clinic is where I began to learn the true power of teamwork.
I have never before had a class as interactive as MPS2 Honors. Ms. Montgomery was so understanding and encouraged us to work together to solve problems rather than turning to her for the answers. I rarely even took out my notebook during class because I was always at the board solving problems with my friends.
Bring on the bubbles
The most memorable moment of that class (and there are many) was a week and a half before finals. Everyone was on edge when Ms. Montgomery came into the room with a surprise for us. She whipped out bottles of bubbles, and we spent the beginning of the class filling our classroom with bubbles — it was the perfect thing to ease the anxieties of exam week.
Our class dynamic was special. While I was initially really scared about this class, MPS2 ended up being one of my favorite classes of the entire year. I learned a lot about patience, collaboration and the value of extra help.