I think a lot of the time, the difficulty people have with understanding mathematics is psychological; they are intimidated and it inhibits their concentration.
As to why it is hated in school; I think the syllabus is terrible. The problem is that students routinely and regularly get through past their A-levels without ever gaining a clear conception of what maths is about. In the terminology of piano, say, they are teaching people to play scales and practise finger exercises without telling people that music exists and is the end goal.
Also, like playing a musical instrument, mathematics does require a certain amount of routine drilling in technique to master; many people aren't willing to put in the required work.
I love mathematics but I hated it in school, I only came to it later when I discovered what it was actually all about.
I used to hate maths and use to hate myself for hating maths because I thought It would make me look stupid I remeber getting a level 3 in year 6, but it was my mum who took me to loads of tuitions and now I ended up getting 1 mark of an A* for maths gcse which was because of coursework
anyway, I always had this misconception that maths was really hard and I'd never enjoy it, its only when you get good at it as with anything else do you actually enjoy, theres an indescribable satisfaction
I enjoy maths but I was crap at it. I guess it must have something to do with grasping the concept of inferrence. I couldn't tell the time properly untill I was 19!!! But my understanding og English grammar and comprehension excelled that of my class mates.
Maths generally gets a good press on TSR, I've noticed. When people ask what A-Levels they should take, there's the inevitable 'Maths-squad' which jump in with their suggestions. This doesn't really surprise me. Maths, unlike English, is where the academically-minded tend to succeed. It's logical and possesses a great deal of objective 'correctness' which English, for example, cannot offer. With Maths, it would seem, you're either good at it (and consequently 'love' it), or bad at it (and thus 'hate' it). I rarely see the middle ground to the extent that subjects like Biology or History receive. Like I say, most people on TSR probably can do Maths well, but I guess one of the difficulties is that it cannot be learned; it is a skill to which can be difficult to adapt at times.
Honestly, math in school IS boring (and should better be called recipe-using), but uni math is highly (!) creative. In fact, the creativity is almost tangible, as you have to "find a way" to prove things. And no, most math students don't do this by thinking in formulas.. It's hard to explain, but it's definitly a creative process mostly aided by the subconscious.
It's more a "remember a rule and apply it 100 times" subject than a "learn a fact and apply it once" subject that most people are used too. There's lots and lots of subjects in the latter category, and people are familiar with it. Geography, history, biology, psychology and sociology to suggest a few.
As far as I know (and have had experience with); Maths, Chemistry and Physics are the only "apply rules" subjects.
(Original post by billyboymccoy)
cos it seems to be socially acceptable to be rubbish at maths. You say "i'm no good at maths" people don't think your not an intelligent person. Say "I'm no good at reading/writing" and you are.
I hated maths because I wasn't taught how to do it right in primary, and that a huge impact on me when I went to secondary. I still find I have loads of trouble with numbers and I'm still wondering how the hell I got a C in my GCSE