View Full Version : Do You Hate Algebra?


Black Razor
01-29-09, 11:25 PM
Ok, I am going to go on record amongst my ADHD peers and say it. I effing HATE Algebra. I HATE IT! I HATE IT! I HATE IT!

Given a choice between cutting off my arm or doing algebra I would choose to lose an arm, and I am NOT being overdramatic. I am an inattentive type ADDer, and for me I can not think of one single thing which brings me to infuriating rage quicker than Algebra. I swear that I can't wait to be done with this bull crap. It's not that I don't get it or realize it's importance so all of you math lovers, please I ask you to remain silent on this particular thread. It's just that algebra has ZERO margin for error, and I do NOT function well in anything which requires so much accuracy. It's also not that I am a math phone, because I love math, but algebra is special because its strictly a theoretical discipline. There are no applications for Algebra as an isolated subject. It's only real purpose is to form a common foundation for other mathematical sciences, of which I actually enjoy especially Geometry and Trig. I enjoy Geometry for example because I actually NEED to use it in my life, life for example figuring out how many gallons of paint to buy when I need to paint a room. Algebra has no applications in of an itself and it drives me nuts because there is no ends to justify the means.

Algebra for me is like beating my head in with a hammer. Any other ADDers out there feel me on this?

Imnapl
01-29-09, 11:29 PM
I am not a math "lover", per se, but I really like Algebra. :o

ecu20
01-29-09, 11:41 PM
Ok, I am going to go on record amongst my ADHD peers and say it. I effing HATE Algebra. I HATE IT! I HATE IT! I HATE IT!

Given a choice between cutting off my arm or doing algebra I would choose to lose an arm, and I am NOT being overdramatic. I am an inattentive type ADDer, and for me I can not think of one single thing which brings me to infuriating rage quicker than Algebra. I swear that I can't wait to be done with this bull crap. It's not that I don't get it or realize it's importance so all of you math lovers, please I ask you to remain silent on this particular thread. It's just that algebra has ZERO margin for error, and I do NOT function well in anything which requires so much accuracy. It's also not that I am a math phone, because I love math, but algebra is special because its strictly a theoretical discipline. There are no applications for Algebra as an isolated subject. It's only real purpose is to form a common foundation for other mathematical sciences, of which I actually enjoy especially Geometry and Trig. I enjoy Geometry for example because I actually NEED to use it in my life, life for example figuring out how many gallons of paint to buy when I need to paint a room. Algebra has no applications in of an itself and it drives me nuts because there is no ends to justify the means.

Algebra for me is like beating my head in with a hammer. Any other ADDers out there feel me on this?

I think you may have algebra and geometry mixed up.... Geometry is full of therums, and algebra is that "figuring out how many gallons of paint to buy when i need to paint a room."

I have adhd type inattention, and love algebra, but absolutely HATE geometry.

ustilago
01-29-09, 11:52 PM
Geometry and linear algebra are fine by me. I excel at spatial relations stuff (well, I used to anyways).

Calculus on the other hand. . . I withdrew from Calc 1 because I couldn't concentrate with the smokin' hot blonde girl sitting beside me (I found out later she wanted to ask me out and I totally blew it). The insane professor with the thick arabic accent didn't help either. . .

And then I failed remedial Calc. The only F on my transcript. . .

Black Razor
01-29-09, 11:56 PM
...I withdrew from Calc 1 because I couldn't concentrate with the smokin' hot blonde girl sitting beside me (I found out later she wanted to ask me out and I totally blew it..

ROFLMFAO! :D OMG, dude that is soooo funny. I needed a good laugh. Thanks!

Driver
01-30-09, 12:11 AM
Even though my experience was plagued with careless errors, I loved mathematics at school. Rules, relationships, rates, ratios, logic, etc, was awesome.

I event did maths electives at university.

INaBOX
01-30-09, 12:17 AM
i actually really like math. im generally analytical (if you havent figured it out yet) and love finding solutions to a problem.. but i need that rigid structure or it won't happen for me.

kwalk
01-30-09, 04:50 PM
i looooove algebra, but I hated pre algebra? I thought it was the teacher, or was it the ADD? I took stimulants in all my math classes after pre algebra. but then I took a class without meds for college algebra and thought it was boring :/ and dropped out because of that........ but his voice was sooooooooooo boring!!!!

djquietude
02-01-09, 05:17 PM
I graduated with a History degree in 2005, then went to a different university to study physics. I quickly fell in love with mathematcs, but ONLY after I started taking 15 mg ER Dexedrine spansules once a day (which I wasn't technically supposed to be on-- disclaimer, no one do that, it's illegal, a felony)

Anyway, I always thought I was horrible at math, but at the time, with the meds, I aced university pre-calc algebra, pre-calc trig, and got an A- in a summer course of Calculus.

One point here is that I was taking ADD meds (which at that time I thought of as "speed"), and miraculously started understanding math. I didn't get diagnosed for another 3 1/2 years, and it's funny that I hadn't considered the implications of the med's usefulness) I never could pay enough attention to the little "in between" steps, always jumping to a conclusion for the answer, which in math of course, doesn't work!

Calculus gives you a little more wiggle room than algebra, but unfortunately it requires a thorough and complete understanding of the pre-calc levels. Algebra gets more interesting beyond the calculus preparation classes, but it also gets damn hard.

Algebra, trig, calc, and geometry all have good practical applications for the average person, but I think the best benefit isn't the math itself, but the way it helps you learn to think logically, taking everything step-by-step. After thousands of times trying to figure out "x," I found myself thinking about it as the unforseen variable in any real-life situation. For instance, I need $100 for my power bill, $60 for the phone, etc, and I want $200 spending money this week, but it all depends on "x," the variable-- my paycheck, finding a $20 on the sidewalk, tax refunds, etc. This may not sound helpful but if you put a conservative estimate on the value of this "x" then you can plan accordingly. Maybe I'm just a weird thinker!! lol

Black Razor, is there any particular part of Algebra that gives you a hard time? I always made mistakes with factoring equations... that was my problem.

*Fun fact of the day!* (I thought was interesting when I learned this): "Algebra" comes from the Arabic "al-jabr," while geometry obviously comes from the Greeks. I think it's neat because the idea of say, x, is conceptual in algebra (i.e., x times x), but in the old Greek geometry, for instance in the Pythagorean theorem (a + b = c, where a and b are two lengths of a right triangle, and c is the hypotenuse, or longest end), it literally involved drawing a square off the sides of the triangle! And the results come out the same!

OK, rambling post, I quietly withdraw. ;)

Wafflez
02-02-09, 12:50 AM
I find algebra really easy, almost like I've been doing it for years its really easy for me but I grow bored and loose my attention span and then I start to fall behind, if it's not falling behind then I make too many mistakes and get the wrong answer.

djquietude
02-11-09, 06:10 PM
I find algebra really easy, almost like I've been doing it for years its really easy for me but I grow bored and loose my attention span and then I start to fall behind, if it's not falling behind then I make too many mistakes and get the wrong answer.

You hit the nail on the head here... algebra, like all math, requires careful and focused attention.

I also found that when I was bored, I made more mistakes, especially in high school. In college I did much better...I think my pre-calc prof helped a lot because he looked like Einstein and spoke like Borat, so it was impossible for me to be bored in his class.

Wafflez
02-11-09, 07:01 PM
You hit the nail on the head here... algebra, like all math, requires careful and focused attention.

I also found that when I was bored, I made more mistakes, especially in high school. In college I did much better...I think my pre-calc prof helped a lot because he looked like Einstein and spoke like Borat, so it was impossible for me to be bored in his class.I know, my teacher gets frustrated with me because I make careless mistakes that he thinks I shouldn't make.

djquietude
02-11-09, 11:37 PM
I know, my teacher gets frustrated with me because I make careless mistakes that he thinks I shouldn't make.

Oh hell yeah, I remember blowing advanced trig equations that took up half a page by forgetting to cancel out a negative or cross-multiply properly. It's like the interest I had was the big picture, the cool concepts, so I would sort of zone out during the steps. And math's all about steps.

florida10
02-12-09, 12:15 AM
I'll take math over any subject any day. Mostly because it's pretty much black and white. Either you have the answer, or you don't. It's not like, "Describe the symbolisms and themes used throughout this story, and how they relate to modern day." /shudder

Wafflez
02-12-09, 12:45 AM
Oh hell yeah, I remember blowing advanced trig equations that took up half a page by forgetting to cancel out a negative or cross-multiply properly. It's like the interest I had was the big picture, the cool concepts, so I would sort of zone out during the steps. And math's all about steps.

Yeah. Oh well, just need to be more careful. I hope to transfer into Integrated 2 next year because this year has reminded that even the second time through algebra I can't do it.

djquietude
02-12-09, 02:34 PM
I'll take math over any subject any day. Mostly because it's pretty much black and white. Either you have the answer, or you don't. It's not like, "Describe the symbolisms and themes used throughout this story, and how they relate to modern day." /shudder

I feel this way too. I love reading and writing fiction, but a few college english major classes were all I could handle before I changed my major.

Also, there are different ways to arrive at the right answer in math, which is something else I love. I returned to school for mathematics, but sadly had to leave due to (big surprise) not enough financial aid. I still practice calculus from time to time, since my college calc textbook changed editions and I got the $170 book and CD-ROMS for 3 dollars.

stef
02-12-09, 02:54 PM
I'll take math over any subject any day. Mostly because it's pretty much black and white. Either you have the answer, or you don't. It's not like, "Describe the symbolisms and themes used throughout this story, and how they relate to modern day." /shudder

Wow I'm the exact opposite! the more obscure the essay, the better grades I had.
I HATED algebra; beyone the basic equation, either I didn't understand it or if I did, I messed up something or inversed numbers etc. I got by memorizing how to do it (for the test) but never really understanding a thing. Actually geometry was better because you can "see" it. and it had a lot of nice words like "parallel".
The cruelest invention of all: word problems. Math with words! that is just so unfair.

orangesky
02-12-09, 03:27 PM
OK I'm GREAT at mathematics. I finished my science degree with a mathematics minor. My question is, how can I exceed in High Level Mathematics, and science and not be able to wash dishes, pick up my house and pay my bills on time? How can I succeed so well in school and rather fail at life?? I'm not sure that our educational system really works at getting us ready for the real world. I'm sorry you hate Algebra, it was one area I did very well at. It seems logical and the fact that there is a right answer and a correct procedure to get there is comforting. It is also nice to get immediate feedback on how well you are doing. School is cool. It's the rest of the world that I have a problem with.

stef
02-12-09, 04:51 PM
School is cool. It's the rest of the world that I have a problem with.

Exactly!
if i could just go to my job, and there wasn't the rest of it...

djquietude
02-13-09, 05:46 PM
Actually geometry was better because you can "see" it. and it had a lot of nice words like "parallel".

The ancient Greeks would be very happy to hear this...

I read a book on the history of mathematics. It's got some very nasty moments! For instance, the ancient Greek Pythagoreans, a sect who believed strictly in Pythagoras's geometry using only a straightedge (no increments of measure) and compass, are said to have taken a man (I think his name was Zeno) out to sea and drowned him for attempting to put geometry into semi-algebraic terms.

Also, the famous "Calculus Wars" between Sir Isaac Newton and Gottfried Wilhelm Von Leibniz involved angry letters, sabotage and subterfuge by the followers of each great thinker, and occasional gentlemanly violence.

Apparently both Newton and Leibniz developed calculus on their own, and when Leibniz released his book on calculus, Newton apparently dug around in his drawers and found his own version of calculus that he claimed he had written years before. I believe neither of them actually stole from each other since both were such amazing minds.

Interestingly, the version of Calc we use to day, with "limits," "derivatives" and "integrals" is in the language of Leibniz. If we were using Newton's terms we'd be saying things like "fluxions."

I'm a geek.:rolleyes:

stef
02-13-09, 07:05 PM
I'm a geek.:rolleyes:

well then so am I, because that was really interesting!
why don't math teachers throw in some anecdotes like that once in a while?

djquietude
02-15-09, 07:23 AM
well then so am I, because that was really interesting!
why don't math teachers throw in some anecdotes like that once in a while?

Well thankya, stef, I'm glad I'm not the only one! :) And it's why I have a (useless) history degree and not a math one.

Most math teachers that I've come across seem to be very logical and "mathematical" in their teaching methods, it's a bit of a given by the nature of the beast (or beauty, depending on how you like math)... even my favorite college mathematics prof only alluded to historical names once or twice in the semester, and merely suggested we check the stuff out on our own time. I think the best math minds seek out the most efficient use of class time... sadly, the fun history parts don't fit in the curriculum. :(

stef
02-15-09, 04:38 PM
I suppose they really don't have time... the worst is a teacher who won't take a few minutes to explain something a different way.
- hey my husband has a history degree too!

djquietude
02-15-09, 08:20 PM
hey my husband has a history degree too!

You mind if I ask if he's happy he got it? I'm glad I have mine, I love history, and the degree contributed immensely to my understanding of the patterns of human nature and societies as they rise and fall.

Unfortunately, it's not been very practical, and at this point, I'm going to be taking the LSAT in May and applying to law schools. History's a great pre-law degree.

stef
02-16-09, 05:16 PM
not at all - yes, he's happy with it; but there is little you can do in France with a liberal arts degree other than teaching (- don't even get me started!) and he works in computers now. But he's still interested in history.
good luck with the LSATs!

mctavish23
02-16-09, 09:20 PM
Yes

and

No

sometimes.

tc

mctavish23

(Robert)

InTheZone
02-16-09, 10:34 PM
I hate alegebra with a passion that rivals the original poster. I think I can even trace the beginnings of the problems ADHD has caused in my life back to taking Algebra I in high school. I never passed...I was even caught cheating once. I had to take the more simple Business Math classes after trying algebra for two years just to graduate high school. So, I basically had to take four years of math just to get the two math credits needed to graduate.

Even now when I ponder going back to college, if it requires algebra in any way shape or form, it's a deal breaker.

djquietude
02-18-09, 12:23 AM
I hate alegebra with a passion that rivals the original poster. I think I can even trace the beginnings of the problems ADHD has caused in my life back to taking Algebra I in high school. I never passed...I was even caught cheating once. I had to take the more simple Business Math classes after trying algebra for two years just to graduate high school. So, I basically had to take four years of math just to get the two math credits needed to graduate.

Even now when I ponder going back to college, if it requires algebra in any way shape or form, it's a deal breaker.

Hey, just curious, were you on ADHD meds at the time? I did terribly in algebra/geometry in high school, but for a brief period was taking Dexedrine in college during math, and it sort of helped everything "click," even getting me A's. Maybe it could help?

I wouldn't let it stop you from heading back to school; it's really dependent on your major, but most colleges only require a course of college algebra for gen. ed. credits, and they start from pre-algebra in most cases. Good luck to you in your schooling!

InTheZone
02-18-09, 11:59 PM
Hey Mr. DJ, (I'm sorry I just had to LOL)

No, this was when I was a freshman in high school and I didn't even know what ADHD was at the time. I am 38 years old now and was JUST diagnosed this past November. I am planning on doing a post on the Careers section because I need to vent a little about the situation I am in right now and is making my life hell. Maybe even get some advice. I am basically near the end of my rapidly fraying rope.

Oh, and I was given a prescription for Adderall when I was diagnosed but I had to stop taking it because I was fired from yet another job and I have no health benefits to get any more, not that I really need it if I'm not working.

djdragon7k
02-19-09, 01:37 PM
Ok, I am going to go on record amongst my ADHD peers and say it. I effing HATE Algebra. I HATE IT! I HATE IT! I HATE IT!

Given a choice between cutting off my arm or doing algebra I would choose to lose an arm, and I am NOT being overdramatic. I am an inattentive type ADDer, and for me I can not think of one single thing which brings me to infuriating rage quicker than Algebra. I swear that I can't wait to be done with this bull crap. It's not that I don't get it or realize it's importance so all of you math lovers, please I ask you to remain silent on this particular thread. It's just that algebra has ZERO margin for error, and I do NOT function well in anything which requires so much accuracy. It's also not that I am a math phone, because I love math, but algebra is special because its strictly a theoretical discipline. There are no applications for Algebra as an isolated subject. It's only real purpose is to form a common foundation for other mathematical sciences, of which I actually enjoy especially Geometry and Trig. I enjoy Geometry for example because I actually NEED to use it in my life, life for example figuring out how many gallons of paint to buy when I need to paint a room. Algebra has no applications in of an itself and it drives me nuts because there is no ends to justify the means.

Algebra for me is like beating my head in with a hammer. Any other ADDers out there feel me on this?


I used to hate algebra, but algebra, geometry and trig is the math skills i CAN do. It is basic multiplication and division i struggle with.

djquietude
02-19-09, 08:05 PM
Hey Mr. DJ, (I'm sorry I just had to LOL)

Sweet, lovin' it. :cool:

No, this was when I was a freshman in high school and I didn't even know what ADHD was at the time. I am 38 years old now and was JUST diagnosed this past November. I am planning on doing a post on the Careers section because I need to vent a little about the situation I am in right now and is making my life hell. Maybe even get some advice. I am basically near the end of my rapidly fraying rope.

Oh, and I was given a prescription for Adderall when I was diagnosed but I had to stop taking it because I was fired from yet another job and I have no health benefits to get any more, not that I really need it if I'm not working.

I was diagnosed at 29, have terrible problems with a regular job (I work several part-time writing/editing/education jobs from home-- how ADD is that? lol), and also have no health benefits.

Fortunately, in this fine county of Portage in the fine state of Wisconsin, there are amazing programs in place to assist people just like you and me.

I get my Vyvanse free with a snazzy Shire Pharmaceutical Vyvanse card (even has nice colors) and my Adderall is generic and costs me about 22 bucks a month. It's the Adderall XR that's still under patent (as far as I know) and is the pricey one. My diazepam is one of the cheapest drugs known to mankind that actually does something (8-9 dollars for 60 10mg pills) and my Seroquel comes straight from AstraZeneca, and I'm assuming it's a great tax write-off for the suits at the golf course.

There was hellacious paperwork and documentation involved in all of this. I'm fortunate that I don't have children because they wouldn't be covered for all the things a kid needs... but I just have the big kid, me, to worry about. I wonder if there is something similar in your area? I hope my account is helpful in perhaps steering you towards some of the benefits offered by the good parts of the system, the ones that offer health care to people like me who can't get one 40 hour a week job (in my line of work), but somehow can juggle 2-3 part time ones at the same time.

That said, I think if you took another stab at the math with the proper ADD/ADHD treatment, you might experience significantly improved results. :)

InTheZone
02-24-09, 08:43 AM
That said, I think if you took another stab at the math with the proper ADD/ADHD treatment, you might experience significantly improved results. :)

Well maybe. Finding employment is my first priortity now.

Wow sounds like you have a good program there for the meds. The psychiatrist I started going to when I was working (my employer paid for it...seeing as they let me go I cannot go see him anymore as I don't have the cash) put me on Adderall XR. When I get another job I am going to probably see another shrink (this guy is NOT good) and see if Adderall is really the best choice for me. I have heard good things about other meds.

I am only hoping that with the new stimulus bill I can get a fair amount of unemployment and maybe a good way to get affordable meds in case I get some temp work or something. Apparently Gov. Schwarzenegger is in favor or relaxing some of the restrictions on benefits.

RedSkittles
02-25-09, 01:20 AM
I love algebra! i love anything to do with math. (p.s. dont worry, all math is is knowing how to do it. once you know how to do it, its smooth sailing)

Black Razor
03-10-09, 05:50 AM
I since have worked through my issues with Math. What did I find upon closer inspection? Well, it's not the math itself. My problem is in the fact that it takes me longer to understand concepts that most, but I eventually get them.

The problem creates itself because of the demands of traditional college life. So much material, and often uninformed administrators give far too little time. It creates a snowball effect, which leaves me farther and farther behind. Only this time I got an edge, I'm working with the disability services office in my school and, shall we say "politely requiring" m,y teacher to give me extra time. It's been a miracle.

Also, I had to take ownership of some habits I had. I allowed myself to not pay attention to the lecture because I was self defeating myself. I allowed myself to believe that it didn't matter even if I paid attention, so I didnt. BIG MISTAKE! I would later learn in my Speech class how to actively listen (blog post to come later on that) and I realized what I was doing wrong. I needed to start paying extra attention to her lecture and just flat out stop her if I didn't understand and be demanding of the attention I need to succeed. I did this in a positive way by moving to the front of the class during lecture and also participating more in the lecture which keeps me from mentally wandering off. So, yeah there you go. Something to think about.

-Razor

prairiedawg
03-10-09, 11:43 AM
algebra is probably my favorite subtype of math. you like that, "subtype", ha.;-)

Grithor
04-19-09, 09:30 AM
I hate all kinds of math. The only things im good at in school is music and english. The rest im pretty much useless at. :P

colpay
04-19-09, 10:13 PM
OMG!!!!! When I started reading this post, I had to wonder if my 16 yr old son had written it! Although he's not to the trig and calc stuff yet. He has basically given up on school, I think in large part because of Alg. 2. He's very smart and says he understands it, but he is soooooo bored with it, it has become complete and total torture for 55 minutes m-f. We are considering online courses for him to get his credits. Last 9wks he had set a goal of having all A's and B's. He did great until the last 3 wks and he said he could not keep it up any more. His teacher told us at parent/teacher conference that he was so far ahead of the rest of the class (who was struggling to get the concept). I made him come and read this post and I hope he gets that he's not alone! I'm going to have him read the other posts and hope he realizes that he doesn't have to nix the idea of college because of Alg 2!
Thanks, colpay

RedSkittles
04-27-09, 09:26 PM
I hate all kinds of math. The only things im good at in school is music and english. The rest im pretty much useless at. :P

hmmm the only subjects that im good at is lunch and reccess -.-

novagal
04-28-09, 12:08 AM
ugh. I'm registering for algebra tomorrow. It's the only class that's kept me from graduating. I'm 47, and I'm tired of running from it. They've got a new modular class that allows students to work at their own pace with a computer, (instructors and tutors present) and it's credit/no credit. It sounds much less intimidating and I think it's my only chance. And I pretty much have to take it in the fall, because this year they've changed the requirements so that if I miss a semester, I'll have to pass intermediate algebra. I never passed pre-algebra, I don't even know what that is.

My high school math teacher was wonderful, those of us who were having difficulty, he'd call us at home to encourage us and answer questions. It didn't help. I was finally put in general math so that I'd not screw up my gpa. I was taking English classes at the college in my junior and senior year in high school, but had to take general math. I was in the mentally gifted programs in elementary school. It doesn't make sense that I could never get it.

Anyway, I'm feeling a little nervous about the fall semester. I'm sure you'll all be hearing about it.....

Johnny123
04-28-09, 01:59 AM
I hate it when i THINK I AM DOING WELL in an algebra test but really i'm ****ing it up cause i finish early and play calculator games.