By Sharmayne Schaffer
Do you hate subjects such as Geometry, Calculus or Algebra? If so, you’re not alone. Each semester, students face their biggest academic fear… Mathematics. Flash cards, Study groups and tutors have assisted students academically for years. However, Eastern Campus Assistant Professor of Mathematics, Aaron Altose has found a way to reach as well as teach students the fundamentals of Math…YouTube.
With over a million views, Professor Altose’s channel, MathWithMisterA provides students with 222 videos on how to factor polynomials. In 2009, Altose decided to create the channel to visually assist students that longed for more detailed examples that they’d have access to from home. “I was meeting with students a lot outside of class, and I found myself doing a lot of the same problems over and over,” Altose explained. “I thought that it might be helpful for students to have videos to watch on their own time and at their own pace, so that when we are together we can go into more detailed questions, instead of just doing the same kinds of examples over and over.”
It’s not surprising that Math has always been Altose’s favorite subject growing up. With a Master’s degree in Mathematics from Cleveland State University, Altose didn’t realize that he wanted to teach until grad school. In 2006, the Cleveland native found himself in need of a job. His plans, initially were to find something that would “pay the bills”. However, Altose received more than he bargained for. “I first came to Tri-C to teach because I was hungry and I needed work,” explained Altose. “But, in my first semester teaching at Tri-C, I basically liked every single thing about the job, so, I didn’t think about trying to do anything else after that.”
If you look up the word ‘interactive’ in the dictionary, you might stumble across the name Aaron Altose. Nearly every student that describes Altose’s teaching style, can’t help but to mention how hands-on and personable he is. Chanel Seawright, a student in Altose’s Math 0990 class describes her experience. “His teaching style is very interactive,” Seawright explains. “He doesn’t just lecture, he walks you through things and he’s very personable.” Ironically, Altose credits an extremely impatient high school Math teacher for his nurturing style in the classroom. “To be honest with you, I had a math teacher in high school that I did not care for at all, and so I basically try to do the opposite of what my high school teacher did for me, “said Altose.
Aaron Altose turned a couple views into a million, a negative past experience into a positive, and many confused students into confident mathematicians. Currently, His goal is to reach two million viewers on YouTube. Will he reach it? You do the Math…
Picture 1 features Aaron Altose preparing to teach his class
Picture 2 features Aaron Altose Teaching (left to right) Marlin Stradford, John Long, Katie Blumenberg and Tamisha Bacon