readergirlz is a literacy and social media project for teens, awarded the National Book Foundation's Innovations in Reading Prize. The rgz blog serves as a depot for news and YA reviews from industry professionals and teens. As volunteers return full force to their own YA writing, the organization continues to hold one initiative a year to impact teen literacy. All are welcome to "like" us on Facebook!

Monday, January 31, 2011

Featured Series: MATH DOESN'T SUCK, by Danica McKellar

Happy Monday, readergirlz! Today, instead of a Featured Title, we've got a whole entire SERIES as our nonfiction pick for the month. And boy, do I wish these books had been around when I was in school.
It's no secret that historically, the perception was that math and science were "boy" subjects, while girls obviously gravitated to the social sciences and the arts. As a theory, it had, um, a few flaws. Sexist? Yep. Unfair? Sure. Self-fulfilling? Definitely. I can tell you from personal experience that after a few less-than-stellar experiences with math, I decided I was a hopeless case, and wrote it off. If only I'd had a role model to encourage me, and to push me to rethink my attitude toward math!

If only I'd had someone like Danica McKellar.
Here's what she has to say about her books, the MATH DOESN'T SUCK series, and her own experiences in school:

Let's get a few things straight: Acne sucks. Mean people suck. Finding out that your boyfriend kissed another girl? That would totally suck. Too much homework, broken promises, detention, divorce, insecurities: suck, suck, suck, suck, suck.
But math is actually a good thing. Here are a few reasons why: Math builds confidence, keeps you from getting ripped off, makes you better at adjusting cookie recipes, understanding sports scores, budgeting and planning parties and vacations, interpreting how good a sale really is, and spending your allowance. It makes you feel smart when you walk in a room, prepares you for better-paying jobs, and helps you to think more logically.
Most of all, working on math sharpens your brain, actually making you smarter in all areas. Intelligence is real, it's lasting, and no one can take it away from you. Ever.
And take it from me, nothing can take the place of the confidence that comes from developing your intelligence—not beauty, or fame, or anything else "superficial."

The MATH series is a perfect fit for this month's theme, as McKellar gives girls everywhere hope that with a little patience, we can conquer anything, even those school subjects that seem scary and overwhelming.
And it's no surprise that McKellar makes such a poised spokesperson; some of you may know her as the teen star of the tv show,"The Wonder Years." Check out this video, where she talks about her own experiences with math!
So, what do you think, readergirlz? If you've struggled with math like I have, does this series give you hope? Or, maybe you've always been a math whiz, but this book series has inspired you to tackle something else that always seemed complicated? What subjects are you hopeful about conquering this year in school?

Can't get enough of Danica McKellar? Check out her website and her Facebook page, and be sure to read up on her series, KISS MY MATH, and her latest release: Hot X: Algebra Exposed!


Little Willow said...

Go Danica!

I love math. Always have, always will. I've had an affinity for numbers for my entire life.

Anonymous said...

My mom is a teacher and has used this with several girls who just didn't get math...and it works REALLY well!

Micol Ostow said...

Little Willow, I am in awe of your math prowess! And Caitie, I'm glad to hear real anecdotal evidence that the series WORKS!

Melissa Walker said...

So glad this exists and gets a spotlight!

Anonymous said...

I am the worst when it comes to math. I always hated it, until I got my hands on Dancia's first book Math Doesn't Suck. She made me feel so much better about math and even myself. All of her books are so amazing!

Lorie Ann Grover said...

I want this for my daughters!