Throughout most of my schooling, and especially my high school years, I struggled greatly with math. The math teachers in my small school were no aid to my struggles. Often, the math teachers were not, in fact math teachers, and struggled themselves to get through teaching the course. On the rare occasion where we had a teacher with math experience, it was almost more of a struggle. The struggle was that the math had to be done in the exact same way as the teacher had taught it. Even if you got the answer correct, it would still be incorrect if the steps to get the answer were not correct. I suppose this was discriminatory to the different ways that students learn. It made lessons difficult and frustrating for not only myself, but my fellow classmates as well.
Whether teaching or learning math, it is necessary to keep an open mind. By keeping an open mind you are exposed to new ways of learning, and by thus become more considerate of others learning as well. Take Poirier`s writing and the Inuit base twenty method for example. This method is much different than our own, yet it is how an entire culture expressed themselves numerically.
One thing to remember, and to remember especially while teaching is this: what you have always known is not necessarily always right.