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Living Proof: Stories of Resilience Along the Mathematical Journey

Allison K. Henrich, Emille D. Lawrence, Matthew A. Pons, and David G. Taylor, Editors

Ebook Version FREE to Everyone


“If you are a mathematics student reading this book, my hope for you is that you find yourself somewhere in these pages and you are inspired to persist. If you are a mathematics teacher, I hope you find in these pages the inspiration to relieve the pressure of demoralizing struggle from a student.” —Stephen Kennedy, Carleton College

The stories in Living Proof are intended to provide support and inspiration for mathematics students experiencing struggle and despair. If students keep working, if they keep seeking, they’ll be rewarded by serendipity, which is really just, as these stories remind us, the habit of mind to be engaged and to notice when something good has happened.

This powerful collection should also illuminate for faculty the potential damage of debilitating struggle to our students and our discipline and reveal strategies to lessen that harm. Teachers of mathematics can, often unintentionally, wreak profound damage on students by explicitly, or implicitly, conveying an expectation of non-success. The flip side of this is that teachers can also, again often unintentionally, have a profound positive impact with a simple, kindly encouraging remark.

Living Proof is a joint publication of the Mathematical Association of America and the American Mathematical Society.

Print ISBN: 9781470452810

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