Your assignment is to write your mathematical autobiography. It should be approximately two double spaced word-processed pages, but it’s fine if yours is longer. If yours is shorter, that probably means that you haven’t thought hard enough about what to include (in addition to not fulfilling the requirements of the assignment). The purpose of this assignment is to have you reflect on your experiences with mathematics. This will set the stage for all the (possibly different) ways you will experience mathematics in this class and others. The autobiography will also provide me with some sense of how you feel about mathematics and what you have experienced in mathematics classes.
Your autobiography does NOT need to be comprehensive. It should NOT contain every single detail that you can remember about your math education. (“In first grade, I had Mrs. Smith. She was mean. In the second grade, I had Mrs. Jones. I liked her because she gave me candy every day.”) Instead, focus on the people and experiences that had significant impacts on you. Include some experiences with teachers (in any grade), both good and bad ones, how your attitude towards mathematics has changed over the years (if it did), why you like it or don’t like it, what feels good about doing math or learning math or teaching math, what is scary for you, what is exciting for you, . . .
Finally, you may wish to write about how this class fits into your academic and career goals. What is your major? Why do you think that major requires this class? How do you think you’ll use information from this course in your future career? your daily life?
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