TOP SECRET FILE: WOOTUBE
Name: Edward (Eddie) Woo,
Head Mathematics Teacher at Cherrybrook Technology High School. Creator of his YouTube channel, which has earned the title ‘Wootube’. Author.
Scale of Notoriety (out of 5):
His YouTube channel makes him pretty well known in the education and teaching world, and he’s gained a lot of recognition from outside this world as well. He won the Australian Local Hero Award in 2018, and in 2017 he was one of 12 teachers to win the Commonwealth Bank Teaching Award.
Scale of Influence (out of 5):
He has had a major influence in education and the way mathematics is taught, with his methods of teaching and YouTube videos not only impacting his immediate students, but also those all over the world.
Alive and teaching in Sydney, Australia.
Eddie is a second-generation Chinese- Australian and was born in Camperdown, Sydney in 1985 as the youngest of three. His Chinese parents, leaving behind their family and careers, migrated from Malaysia in the 70s, in the hopes of providing their children with greater educational opportunities. Growing up, Eddie loved learning, however, sometimes dreaded school where he faced bullying as a result of his race, however, he had teachers who supported his growth and showed him the importance of compassionate and supportive teachers, especially in high school.
After graduating high school, his parents hoped he would go into medicine or law, however, he chose teaching, and graduated from the University of Sydney with a Bachelor of Education (Honours) in Secondary Mathematics and Information Technology. From here he started his teaching career in 2008, and in 2012, he began posting his lessons online.
When Eddie was in year 10, his mother was diagnosed with lung cancer, and he spent a lot of his late high school years looking after her. This experience is what ultimately led him to posting his classroom videos, as he had a student with cancer who was missing a lot of school, and he didn’t want them missing out.
From here, students in his classes began passing around the video links to their friends in other classes, and the channel took off. He now has 1.25 million subscribers to his YouTube channel and has coined the term ‘WooTube’. His youtube lessons are not only used by students, but also by others teachers, who need to provide their students with a little extra explanation. He has also gone on to increase his impact by writing four mathematics books for school students, as well as making many television appearances on his ABC Show, ‘Teenage Boss’ and speaking for TedxTalk.
Both Eddie’s parents are Chinese but immigrated from Malaysia. Despite both his parents being fully Chinese, they put great importance on their children’s first language being English, so they didn’t have to struggle with the language challenges they had when first arriving in Australia. Growing up and continuing now, he and his siblings have kept their culture and heritage alive through cooking their mum’s recipes.
- Humility: Although Eddie has won numerous awards, he has always remained humble, and sees the awards as a way of raising the profile of education and teaching as a career.
- Being a Father: He now has three children and dedicates his time outside of work to spending time with them.
- Inspiring: He has a talent for inspiring students to love maths and consider a career in teaching it, as well as inspiring teaching around Australia.
- Cooking: Although he has his mother’s recipes at his fingertips, he says he can only really cook three of them well
Can make people who hate maths love it!
Georgia Robinson is currently studying Journalism and International Studies (Majoring in Spanish) at the University of Technology Sydney. She is an aspiring journalist with a keen interest in global affairs by advocating multicultural Australian perspectives on a global scale. Georgia is an intrepid traveller with a curious mind and is inspired by SBS reportings.