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4.4 out of 5 stars
4.4 out of 5 stars

on 25 October 2017
I recently finished reading this book and I must say that it was truly inspiring.

Being a Maths teacher myself, I could relate to the experiences of dealing with students having Maths phobia. And indeed there can be no better reward of your hard work than a student coming and telling you that he/she is no longer scared of Maths.

The experiences mentioned in 'Transforming relationships' were heart warming.

I read the book in one go because I was so hooked to it as if I was transported to those situations.

What I particularly liked about the book that it was not preachy rather it was a compilation of all practical and doable things in a classroom setting. I am going to incorporate as many strategies as I can from this book.

I have already passed it to a teacher friend of mine.
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on 25 November 2016
This is what I have been looking for all these years! I struggled with teaching maths when homeschooling my older children; now my youngest are in a good school, in middle-level classes - and still they have been struggling with maths! This wonderful book is working its magic - I wish I had bought it sooner! - and pretty soon my girls will have gone from "hating maths" to "loving maths".
Monica Kochar's book opens the doors and windows of what is usually made into a scary dark prison of numbers and lets in light, fresh air and the views to the wonderful vistas of the world of mathematics. It entices the young mind to venture out, to try the known and simple pathways and come upon miraculous surprises. It lends them tools of vision and perception, of capacity and skill, to enjoy the challenge of forging ahead through the pure and stark beauty of the landscape of maths. They can discover the thrill of solving a difficult problem, appreciate the beauty of an elegant equation.
All this is done in an atmosphere of fun and warmth, making the beginnings beguiling, the reading enjoyable and the practice a game. I am recommending this book to all the school principals I know.
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on 13 October 2016
It is only meant for teachers, and I am a student of grade 6.
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on 19 September 2016
As I began to write this review of Teaching with Love by Monica Kochar, the only regret I felt was that I waited so many months to do this…. Yes, of course, there was work. But when I finally made the time to go through it, it helped me grow as a person and a facilitator – just through the act of reading from cover to endpage. The sheer poetry of Monica’s writing echoed longingly even as I clicked to the last page, riveted to each word, my mind seething with ideas to use in my own work with children and adults.

Monica’s journey, and indeed her “backpack of strategies” are no strangers to me. Seven years ago, I watched my daughter transform under her particular brand of magic. Equally importantly, I knew her as a colleague with whom I had the privilege of working closely on cross-curricular projects. At some point of time, the word “colleague” changed to “friend” and I have continued to follow her journey with keen interest. However, if you assume that Teaching with Love is a book about how to teach math, you would be severely mistaken. Whether or not she intended to, Monica has written a book that every educator should keep on his/her bedside table and refer to at least three times a week, if not first thing every morning. Through its succinctly crafted chapters, she brings out the crux of what it means to be a teacher-educator-facilitator-mentor… of the present and of the future.

To quote Monica, “[Relationships with students] have been the space in which I have come face to face with the best and worst in my nature.” It is in this same space, she writes, in the place where a connection is made between the mentor and the mentee, that learning can take place. Where the relationship provides the undeniable possibility for the learner to reach out to learning, the same relationship urges the facilitator to grow and transform. At the end of each chapter, there are some questions that make the reader pause; a pause that is pregnant with possibilities because the author is asking us to soul-search in the same manner in which she obviously approaches her life and her life’s work.

So, what did I learn, other than how to make a clinometer? For starters, that a clinometer and its construction are important, very important, but this importance is subsidiary to the teamwork that goes into its construction. Why is the teamwork aspect more important? Simply because, and here we come to the central theme or philosophy of Monica’s work, teamwork is an aspect that addresses the complete child. This is nothing short of a revolutionary thought in a world in which everyone is encouraged to get more and more marks, accumulate more and more assets, and in short be judged for what one has rather than what one is. Repeatedly in this book, one meets the thought that scoring well in math is just not as important as feeling confident and being a person with high levels of self-esteem. In articulating this wondrous thought, Monica stands at variance from a system which would rather have you spend hours and hours on math in order to score a C and neglect all those other things that you enjoy and are good at. Throughout the book, Monica seems to be asking us to think about the second cosmic question: How much math does a person really need?

If at this point you have begun to wonder whether or not, as a math teacher, this book will be of any use to you, I would like to pause and say, “Go buy two copies of it – one for yourself and the other for your favourite colleague.” There are enough and more practical ideas that any teacher could easily implement. What is more, many of these ideas are cross-curricular projects that teachers of languages, drama, art and design, special education needs facilitators… can all easily take up in their own subject areas. But please do not mistake the wood for the trees – the wealth and wisdom of the pages will be lost if you miss the basic point of the work, which is: children are precious and we need to understand them, love them and respect them – yes, all of that at all points of time – in order for them to trust us and make the most of the learning spaces we create for them.

With disarming honesty and a lot of humour, Monica describes not just her “success” stories but those that were embarrassing for her – both types of experiences ultimately led her to the place she is now: still growing as a facilitator and as a human being.

If you love your children, your students, and want the best for them, and more importantly, if you feel the need to grow, this book is a journey you need to undertake.
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on 19 November 2016
(Review by Aditi Amritesh)
Math + Magic = Mathemagician is a very well constructed and written guide for concerned parents and educators. This book teaches how to connect with your student on a personal and spiritual level - not only as an educator but as a close friend. Ms. Monica Kochar tells about her unique unit and lesson plans in which she shows not only how she interactively and easily teaches the most incompetent and uninterested of students but also make space for the ‘mental, vital, emotional and physical growth’ of students. Ms. Monica does this by exploring the unique mindsets of every student and seeing things from their point of view.

Ms. Monica talks about a set of questions to keep in mind (these are to do with issues many educators commonly face), planning a topic, quick teaching ideas and many, many more valuable lessons in this guide, making it an asset to any teacher’s library.

Ms. Monica provides real-life in-class situations and experiences she has undergone and how she dealt with them. She then provides more insights on how to deal with the variety of students and classes, treating each child as an individual.

My love for math blossomed under Ms. Monica’s guidance - I’m sure the students of any educator who uses this book in their class will learn to love math like me!
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on 11 November 2016
It is a sad fact, that Maths and fear tend to go hand in hand, especially since children are most often judged as intelligent (or not), on the strength of their ability to 'get marks in Maths'. Small wonder then, that the ones who cannot immediately, intuitively grasp mathematical concepts, tend to develop an aversion to the subject, and one that continues well into adulthood.
Monica Kochar loves the subject of Maths, she loves teaching it to young minds, and she has a deep and abiding love for words and wordplay. Combining these with her over two decades worth of educator experience across age groups, learner abilities, institutions, and the innate compassion with which she relates to students, this book is an endeavor to replace the Math + Fear equation with Math + Magic.
Teachers and parents alike, will find this one full of interesting and engaging methods and means, to replace that look of terror on their kids' face, with one of sheer wonder and delight.
No child is born inherently devoid of logical ability, or a grasping mind. This book, is Monica Kochar's definitive assertion of the above, and her way of translating the same into mathematical ability.
Order your copy. Now. The next generation will thank you for it.
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on 6 November 2016
Math is a subject which has always been feared as a child by many of us, including the teachers. If one is unable to solve a problem or arrive at the correct answer , the feeling of failure though momentary but is very natural ! This book is like Magic which makes you feel that it is not so difficult after all to deal with this subject. Its how we approach each problem and the steps to solve it ! A must buy !
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on 7 November 2016
Monica Kochar is passionate about the subject which reflects very well in this book where she has tried to make Math interesting and easy to follow to not just those who love math but will definitely be very helpful and stimulating to those who fear it. Don't miss a copy of the book whether you are a student, teacher or a parent and witness the magic of math by yourself. Strongly recommended!
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on 6 November 2016
"magic in math" OR "Math a Magic" ...either way you experience, this book is a MUST read to get A BETTER grip on Math.
it shows years of experience, in-depth understanding of subject and most importantly, knowing the way around students.
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on 13 November 2016
I wish my Math teachers had read this book!
Math would not have been such a dreaded subject then.
A must read for all educators and parents.
Makes teaching and learning Math fun.
Thank god for the likes of Monica - gives me hope.
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