The reason most students end up hating mathematics is the ineffectiveness of teachers in conveying its beauty and the fun one can have with it. Some realize the power and beauty of mathematics later in their life, as they take up higher education in science, but most harbor a lifetime of dread for the subject.
This situation needs to be remedied and for that, teachers need to come up with ideas to reach out and engage students in mathematics, for the fun of it. Math bulletin board ideas are one way of reaching out to students. It is very important that you convey how useful math can be in real life.
You need to keep it updated regularly, with information and talk about it in class, to ensure that students check it out. If you come up with some interesting ideas, then children are bound to check it out regularly.
For Middle School
The middle school level math education generally introduces a lot of new mathematical tools and concepts. Many students find this transition to be difficult and you can aid that transition through some interactive ideas and activities, conveyed through the bulletin board. Here are some, that you may try out.
Promise a small prize for any one of the students who puts up a solution first. Let these problems be related to the math topic that you are currently teaching in class. Have a discussion about the solution later.
Real Life Math Examples
It is important to demonstrate to these students how math can be used to solve practical problems in real life. Put up a real life math problem and illustrate its solution, through the use of mathematical tools.
This will convey the power of mathematics to the students. Let them know how trigonometry can be used to gauge distances of far objects, how geometry is used in various engineering sciences.
Short Biographies of Mathematicians
Small biographical snippets about the life of some of the famous mathematicians and their discoveries will convey the beauty and value of mathematics. Put one up every week.
For High School
High school students are well equipped to handle and appreciate the subtle beauty of mathematics and the tools it offers.
Reward students who come up with the smartest solutions. Let these be real life problems which require them to apply math concepts taught in class.
Information About Math Competitions and Careers
The bulletin board is an excellent medium to convey information about math competitions and careers. This way, interested students can get in touch with you and benefit from these opportunities. Also, you can post information about class test updates.
This can help students who are stuck with such problems. You could also explain math terms here, that are relevant to the topic you are teaching.
Information About Advanced Math Applications
You can post information about advanced math topics like fractals, calculus, and how they are applied in science, to appreciate the beauty of nature at a deeper level. Let this be a small peek at cutting edge mathematics, which will hook the advanced student who is really interested in this subject.
There is so much more, that you could do, if you just let your enthusiasm and love about the subject, take over your thinking process. Hope these ideas work out for your class. Maybe there is a budding future mathematician in your class, whom you may discover, through such interactive math activities.
Mediums like the bulletin boards can effectively reach out to students, but the most important factor, that will engage students, is the excitement about the subject, that you convey through your teaching.