At homeme with Learning maths didn’t come easy to this talented teacher
Pair of elephants nts
They are from a trip to Uganda a few weeks ago. I went there to visit schools funded by an Australian NGO to help engage kids with maths. To see their joy in learning was a huge privilege.
Everyone has the potential tential to be a mathematician, says s 2018 Australian Local Hero Eddie Woo. And he says he is living g proof. “If you wanted to find a non-maths person, that was me at school,” he says. “I took all the humanities for the HSC — I never had a passion for maths.”
The talented teacher, who o still teaches the subject at Cherrybrook Technology nology High School in northwestern Sydney, ey, has gained a steady online following with his is YouTube channel, affectionately known as WooTube, since he launched it in 2012 to help a student who was missing class because of illness.
Pretty soon, he had a steady following ollowing which now stands at 340,000 subscribers scribers and his videos have been viewed more than 18 million times. He has just released his first book, Woo’s Wonderful World Of Maths.
Ironically, he credits his success as a maths teacher to his own lack of ability in the he subject while he was at school.
“If you have a teacher that is so good od at the subject, sometimes they cannot comprehend rehend what it is like to not understand something,” hing,” he says. “That can be somewhat counter er productive when you’re an educator.
“The main thing I can bring is the ability lity to empathise with people if they are struggling ing to learn something and to find another way into solving the problem.”
Eddie’s success has taken him away from m his home in Baulkham Hills that he shares with his wife Michelle and their three young g children, as he embarked on national tours for or Science Week, and travelled far as Uganda to o spread the word — about maths of course.
I have a strange relationship with music because I was forced the play the piano as a child. But I came to appreciate its beauty. When you have a problem, music can make a huge difference.
I listen to podcasts voraciously. I love learning about science, history and politics and just the story telling. This American Life is one of my favourites.
I use this camera to film my classes. It embodies the way technology has allowed me to open the windows of my classroom. It’s a huge surprise to me that people are watching.
Portrait of my mum
She died of lung cancer when I was 18 and she was sick through my later years of school. Her death forced me to grow up and helped me understand what really matters.
These were given to me by a student and they have Australian scenes on them. I like to show people how to do card tricks with maths when I travel to other schools.
I became a Christian when I was 14 and I have owned a lot of Bibles. This one has space in the margins for writing. I am rough with it but it has shown me years of love.
Australia’s Local Hero award
I was completely chuffed when the Prime Minister handed this to me. My wife didn’t rate me as a high chance to win it and when I went to Canberra I thought it was great just meeting all these incredible people. It was a shock when I won.
Australia’s favourite star maths teacher and YouTube Eddie Woo An older house in Baulkham and three Hills with his wife Michelle children aged 5, 7, and 11 My acoustic guitar Where family is. I do a fair and even bit of travelling interstate anywhere internationally. I can sleep is being but what hurts me the most God for away from the kids. Thank hard technology — butt it’sits still
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