Published on Wednesday, September 14, 2011 by Emma Raleigh
Though math is a subject most students struggle with, good teachers can make the subject less of a hurdle and even instill a sense of respect for the subject.
Jill Morris, math teacher and department chair, has been an educator for 15 years, seven of which have been at Bryan High.
When learning math, grasping concepts can be made easier through practical examples and explanations, and Morris values the difference it can make in student learning.
“I try [to bring in practical examples],” Morris said. “There are some skills that you have to learn so you can do other math things that have real world applications.”
Senior Nash Porter appreciates how Morris strives to ensure students are able to comprehend concepts and ideas.
“She can relate things to you, and put them into a perspective that’s easy to understand,” Porter said.
Senior Tristan Miranda-Sohrabji agrees and also attributes the success of Morris’ students to her ability to work with different learning styles.
“Mrs. Morris really caters to the individual’s speed of learning,” Miranda-Sohrabji said. “She is willing to break down problems to make sure the student understands.”
Some of the activities, like labs, bring fun to Morris’ class and give students better understanding of what they learn.
“Later this year we will do a Barbie Bungee Jump Lab where we use statistics to decide the correct number of rubber bands needed to allow Barbie to safely bungee jump,” Morris said.
While Morris takes time to help her students, her main goal reaches beyond daily assignments.
“I enjoy helping students learn and be successful and realize that they can achieve things on their own,” Morris said. “I hope that they discover that learning is not something that stops outside of school.”
Miranda-Sohrabji has taken what Morris strives to convey to her students and applied it to his life beyond the world of math.
“If anything, she has taught me to be diligent and to approach all tasks as if they were of the utmost importance,” Miranda-Sohrabji said.
Morris is currently working on her doctorate in Educational Administration to further her education. Her colleagues not only admire her drive to be a life-long learner, but appreciate the work she does within her classroom.
“She’s very smart, and she loves her kids,” Calculus teacher Mike McCarley said. “She’s good at making kids ‘see’ the math.”
Morris’ favorite class to teach is statistics because it was her major during college and she really enjoys the content.
“It is a very useful class because statistics are used so often in everyday life,” Morris said. “I can include real world examples in class and we can discuss how statistics are used and sometimes misused.”
While math might be the field Morris excels in, her students appreciate the fact that she understands that it might not come as easy for them.
“I like that she’s relaxed, and she lets you learn in a way that’s easiest for you, so you can get the most out of her teaching,” Porter said. “She lets you think outside the box to get things, while helping you get the right answer.”