Free Republic
Browse · Search
News/Activism
Topics · Post Article

Skip to comments.

Is Algebra Necessary?
New York Times ^ | July 28, 2012 | ANDREW HACKER

Posted on 07/29/2012 6:05:38 AM PDT by reaganaut1

A TYPICAL American school day finds some six million high school students and two million college freshmen struggling with algebra. In both high school and college, all too many students are expected to fail. Why do we subject American students to this ordeal? I’ve found myself moving toward the strong view that we shouldn’t.

My question extends beyond algebra and applies more broadly to the usual mathematics sequence, from geometry through calculus. State regents and legislators — and much of the public — take it as self-evident that every young person should be made to master polynomial functions and parametric equations.

There are many defenses of algebra and the virtue of learning it. Most of them sound reasonable on first hearing; many of them I once accepted. But the more I examine them, the clearer it seems that they are largely or wholly wrong — unsupported by research or evidence, or based on wishful logic. (I’m not talking about quantitative skills, critical for informed citizenship and personal finance, but a very different ballgame.)

This debate matters. Making mathematics mandatory prevents us from discovering and developing young talent. In the interest of maintaining rigor, we’re actually depleting our pool of brainpower. I say this as a writer and social scientist whose work relies heavily on the use of numbers. My aim is not to spare students from a difficult subject, but to call attention to the real problems we are causing by misdirecting precious resources.

The toll mathematics takes begins early. To our nation’s shame, one in four ninth graders fail to finish high school. In South Carolina, 34 percent fell away in 2008-9, according to national data released last year; for Nevada, it was 45 percent. Most of the educators I’ve talked with cite algebra as the major academic reason.

(Excerpt) Read more at nytimes.com ...


TOPICS: Culture/Society
KEYWORDS: algebra; college; education; highrteducation; math; mathematics
Navigation: use the links below to view more comments.
first previous 1-50 ... 151-200201-250251-300301-312 next last
To: stormer
https://www.facebook.com/?sk=lf#!/pages/Algebra/109398995745084

*shudder*

251 posted on 07/29/2012 10:59:04 AM PDT by Gritty (Republics fall when the wise are banished because they dare to be honest - Justice Joseph Story)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 198 | View Replies]

To: sam_paine

Lockhart has an interesting critique of the standard mathematics curriculum.

Unlike Galileo’s 17th century debate on world systems, however, I think the optimum solution is somewhere in between that of Simplicio and Salviati.

Like Simplicio, I rather liked the formalism of my late ‘60s instruction in Euclidian geometry. Things have gotten worse rather than better since then: the standard curriculum now just teaches geometry facts without proofs.

But, like Salviati, I rather disliked the curiousity-killing pedagogy of elementary school. I still remember my 4th grade teacher telling me that there were no such things as negative numbers when I argued that, yes, you can subtract 5 from 4.

And, Lockhart is absolutely correct about trig being a two week course that gets expanded to fill an entire semester with useless definitions and purposeless manipulations.


252 posted on 07/29/2012 10:59:42 AM PDT by Skepolitic
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 142 | View Replies]

To: BlatherNaut
I think for all of these educational skills all it takes it practice. My father starting at the 4th grade had me work every problem at the end of each math book chapter over and above whatever was assigned as homework.(I seem to remember the odd problems had answers at the back of the book!) With a willingness to learn and practice K-12 Math can be mastered to a level to at least get through it with a C or better in high school! We are not talking about reaching a Nash or Hawking level of mathematical performance.

Why do liberal educators think that practice in sports and music is good but homework (i.e. practice !) in academic subjects is bad?

I did something similar with my daughter as to what my father did with me, the TV didn't go on until homework was done and done to my satisfaction. Meaning it was correct! I sat at the dining room table with her or in her room at her desk until the standard was met. In elementary school my daughter's performance was "so-so" but by doing the above around middle school a light clicked on with her. She started thinking , ' Hey I like being known as smart!' Also by doing the homework right away rather then argue about it she found out she actually had more time for play. Which resulted in time for social activities, cheerleader, sports e.g., Tae Kwon Do - 2nd degreee Black Belt, etc.

She graduated from college with a dual major in Chemistry and Physics, minors in Math and Classics and is now working on her PhD in Chemical Engineering.

253 posted on 07/29/2012 11:01:26 AM PDT by Reily
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 240 | View Replies]

To: Dr. Sivana

“if not, maybe that person shouldn’t be granted a high school degree”

Dingdingdingding....winner, winner chicken dinner!

Now, the next step is figuring what % of the 14 year old population is capable. I say no more than 30%, probably less.


254 posted on 07/29/2012 11:04:34 AM PDT by Jim Noble (Diseases desperate grown are by desperate appliance relieved or not at all.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 214 | View Replies]

To: SpaceBar
like Ramanujan said, ‘ I study Mathematics to know the mind of God.’

Ramanujan now there's a story !
Everyone go get the book ‘Ramanujan: The Man Who Knew Infinity”.

Almost completely self-taught!

255 posted on 07/29/2012 11:07:50 AM PDT by Reily
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 247 | View Replies]

To: dsrtsage

First, Grandma lives within walking distance so don’t need gas. Second, that $75 would be going toward the electric bill to save the freezer from being cut off. Third, no one is going on a trip since they’re needed to help tend the garden to put food on the table and to do some major diy home repairs since there’s no spare money to pay a professional. That’s my real world.

Some people’s real world would be to dump the his/hers/theirs kids off at grandma’s because they can’t afford them even with foodstamps. Then bum $200 off grandma for gas, beer and smokes to get home.

Still no need to find x.


256 posted on 07/29/2012 11:12:42 AM PDT by bgill
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 234 | View Replies]

To: sam_paine

It’s taking me all day to read this thread. Lockhart’s Lament is interesting, but it lambasts the traditional math curriculum in favor of dreamy ideals. Not exactly the touchy feely approach, maybe, but it could be taken that way. His blast at Geometry is particularly disconcerting. I guess he’s just trying to make a point.

I did learn of Gauss’s “notions vs. notations” quote and tracked it down to an online edition of the Disquisitiones Arithmeticae ( linked by Wikipedia. ) I wondered what the Latin might be. Well, it’s “notionibus” and “notationibus”. I believe this is the “ablative of means” applied to “notio” and “notatio”. So that was interesting.


257 posted on 07/29/2012 11:13:10 AM PDT by dr_lew
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 142 | View Replies]

To: SpaceBar

I love Algebra, too - it is beautiful patterns, amazing concepts, satisfying relationships. The textbooks are bad, though - what 8th grader needs to know OR understand “If a sparrow flies over Mt. Everest with a twig weighing 2 oz and a headwind of 6 kpm” (always metric, because the libs REALLY want us to be like Europe). They can handle plenty of rote as the learn it and not every single problem absolutely HAS to be applied Physics, imho.


258 posted on 07/29/2012 11:19:52 AM PDT by bboop (Without justice, what else is the State but a great band of robbers? St. Augustine)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 247 | View Replies]

To: stormer

The kids I tutor are always confused by the instructors and always afraid to ask. Often the instructor ‘used to be an engineer but now is a mom’ or has come from engineering and now is teaching. My dad was a Shop teacher, engineer-brain: I seldom asked him for math help, either. I got way too much information, he was impatient with my basic math level, and I always ended up in tears.


259 posted on 07/29/2012 11:23:37 AM PDT by bboop (Without justice, what else is the State but a great band of robbers? St. Augustine)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 193 | View Replies]

To: Lonesome in Massachussets
Thanks, it reminds me of Feynmann’s complaint about mathematics textbooks when he was reviewer for the Berkley school department. One book, in particular, consisted of nothing but blank pages. When he called the publisher, she apologized and said that all the reviewers had been accidently sent blank trade show props, with the correct glossy covers. Yet some of the reviewers had already submitted favorable recommendations!

He was serving on the State Curriculum Commision of California, and it wasn't a mistake. The book hadn't been completed and the blank book was a required stand-in. And he didn't call the publisher, he raised the issue in a review meeting, saying he couldn't comment on it because he hadn't seen it. That's when he found out others had reviewed it.

This is in JUDGING BOOKS BY THEIR COVERS in "Surely You're Jokling, Mr. Feynman!" ( N.B. the quotes are part of the title ... and it's FEYNMAN ! )

260 posted on 07/29/2012 11:27:58 AM PDT by dr_lew
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 164 | View Replies]

To: Reily

“Everyone go get the book ‘Ramanujan: The Man Who Knew Infinity’.”

Or at least go to the Wikipedia page.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Srinivasa_Ramanujan

Unbelievable guy - he has virtually no resources, so he starts discovering this stuff in math. He passes it on to the best mathematicians in the world, which were in London (yea, those were the days). The guys in London laugh at his work - it had already been discovered and published. Then they keep reading and say...

...holy crap, this stuff is ground-breaking! He was the smartest mathematical mind in his day, and he had some serious competition. It would up that he no idea what had been published (with his limited resources in India), which is why he repeated that work (which was no trivial feat in itself).


261 posted on 07/29/2012 11:28:16 AM PDT by BobL ( It's easy to be a saint when you have nothing on the line)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 255 | View Replies]

To: Reily
She graduated from college with a dual major in Chemistry and Physics, minors in Math and Classics and is now working on her PhD in Chemical Engineering.

She's obviously an individual with exceptional ability.

A couple of our kids are in engineering and computer programming and received merit scholarships, but another of our kids works relentlessly at math yet can't seem to rise past the average level. On the other hand, the first time he took the SATs he got an 800 on the verbal side of the test. We have a 9 yo who breezed through algebra I, and an 8th grader who struggles with pre-algebra. All taught at home, so can't blame the differences on instruction, or bad materials, or lack of time on task. I agree that practice is essential (particularly in our weak areas) but don't believe it can raise us above our natural limits.

Why do liberal educators think that practice in sports and music is good but homework (i.e. practice !) in academic subjects is bad?

I've been under the impression that kids are getting lots of homework these days, and that it's the parents who are complaining. My niece (in kindergarten!) has nightly homework, which seems ridiculous.

Ultimately when parents (such as yourself) value education, their children will absorb their values.

262 posted on 07/29/2012 11:37:19 AM PDT by BlatherNaut
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 253 | View Replies]

To: reaganaut1

I just graduated from high school. I can now count to 21, naked.


263 posted on 07/29/2012 11:43:37 AM PDT by tweakDU (Someday karma will run over leftist dogma.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Tijeras_Slim

Convert those numbers to inches and I can tell you! ;-D


264 posted on 07/29/2012 11:44:38 AM PDT by Ruy Dias de Bivar
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 10 | View Replies]

To: reaganaut1
People shouldn't get a college degree if they

1) don't know how to open a bank account

2) don't know how much money they will end up paying out in total on their student loan

3) don't know about investing and saving money when you are young instead of waiting till the last minute

4) don't know how mortgages work and how to get one.

5) don't know why it's important to have a good credit score and how to achieve one.

6) don't know how to stay out of debt.

265 posted on 07/29/2012 11:51:17 AM PDT by CaptainK (...please make it stop. Shake a can of pennies at it.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: reaganaut1

If you go to the grocery store, you do algebra. If you have to do laundry, you do algebra. If you have a loan, you do algebra.

And if you fish or go to the beach, you witness Trig and engage in. Also true if you sail or watch the ocean.

If you watch the stars, you do astronomy.

If you golf, you do physics.

And if you listen to how close a storm or anything else is, you are engaging in the Doppler effect.

What is wrong with people that they don’t want to learn about the applications of the things that have sound basis in math? It’s ONLY math.


266 posted on 07/29/2012 11:55:36 AM PDT by combat_boots (The Lion of Judah cometh. Hallelujah. Gloria Patri, Filio et Spiritui Sancto.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: InterceptPoint

I’m a history teacher. I tutor pretty much every subject except foreign languages, and that’s exactly what I do. :)

It’s really not that hard! Take a couple weeks and keep working at it and you’ll wonder why it gave you so many problems!


267 posted on 07/29/2012 11:56:25 AM PDT by JCBreckenridge (Texas, Texas, Whisky)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 60 | View Replies]

To: pepsionice

I wholeheartedly agree that our students should have to take financial math. They should learn the equations for loans and be able to understand how the stock market works, including reading and comprehending financial terms.

There is no reason not to.


268 posted on 07/29/2012 12:00:42 PM PDT by combat_boots (The Lion of Judah cometh. Hallelujah. Gloria Patri, Filio et Spiritui Sancto.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 28 | View Replies]

To: Raycpa

Taxes is different. Most tax accountants are very sequential thinkers and do not make good financial accountants.


Funny you should say that too. I am computer scientist, but I get a real kick out of doing my taxes. Go figure.


269 posted on 07/29/2012 12:00:57 PM PDT by rbg81
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 249 | View Replies]

To: wintertime

As a history teacher, I’d be thrilled if I had to pass a GED including the math portion. Got a 1540 on my SATs - 800 verbal and 740 math. :D

And yes, I also have Calculus I, as well as Calculus II and III, Linear Algebra, differential equations, etc.


270 posted on 07/29/2012 12:01:18 PM PDT by JCBreckenridge (Texas, Texas, Whisky)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 99 | View Replies]

To: Raycpa

That is I get a kick out of doing my taxes...not paying them.


271 posted on 07/29/2012 12:01:54 PM PDT by rbg81
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 249 | View Replies]

To: Baynative

Sorry about that.

The odd thing is that you use Algebra every time you have to calculate what your expenses would be if ......

And when you see the lines left by waves on the sand, you are witness to trig.


272 posted on 07/29/2012 12:02:56 PM PDT by combat_boots (The Lion of Judah cometh. Hallelujah. Gloria Patri, Filio et Spiritui Sancto.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 11 | View Replies]

To: dr_lew

OMG

Ablative has reached the data of FR!


273 posted on 07/29/2012 12:08:18 PM PDT by combat_boots (The Lion of Judah cometh. Hallelujah. Gloria Patri, Filio et Spiritui Sancto.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 257 | View Replies]

To: lonestar

“The Science teacher was a tyrant but any time school is mentioned in my hometown, the conversation always turns to him and everybody who ever took a class under him has a tale to tell. My dentist said that those HS science classes got him through dental school.”

I wouldn’t doubt it! Sounds like an excellent teacher, but man, that must have been a wakeup call!


274 posted on 07/29/2012 12:09:27 PM PDT by JCBreckenridge (Texas, Texas, Whisky)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 136 | View Replies]

To: driftless2

Yep, and employers are no longer allowed to give aptitude tests (disparate impact and all of that), so they rely on precisely those academic proxies to tell them who is smart—and sufficiently conscientious.


275 posted on 07/29/2012 12:14:25 PM PDT by 9YearLurker
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 171 | View Replies]

To: bboop
One of the more interesting aspects of advanced algebra, and unfortunately something that is glossed over at the high school level, is that algebra really has nothing to do with numbers per se. Numbers can manifest the underlying principles given their usual interpretation, but the entities under consideration are simply a set of symbols and the collection of rules that combine and transform them in an internally self consistent way. High school algebra is heavily skewed toward the notion of quantity, which is actually algebra as applied to performing symbolic arithmetic, which in turn is geared towards solving real world problems like travelling to grandma's house on half a tank of gas. It's a lot more than that in reality.
276 posted on 07/29/2012 12:21:13 PM PDT by SpaceBar
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 258 | View Replies]

To: reaganaut1

I have to find the article from a few years ago, but it correlated success in high school math and success in college. Of the students who failed to complete Algebra (and went no further in math) in high school, less than 2% graduated college.


277 posted on 07/29/2012 12:21:44 PM PDT by Tanniker Smith (Rome didn't fall in a day, either.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: JCBreckenridge

You’re a smart guy. So?...Here’s a math problem for you.

If teachers, on average, have the lowest SAT, ACT, and GRE scores on campus, and you have a very**high** score, then what sort of scores to other teachers have in order to reach a **low** average?

Scary, isn’t it to think about those who are teaching our nation’s children?

By the way, given that you are so smart how can you stand being surrounded with ignorance?


278 posted on 07/29/2012 12:26:42 PM PDT by wintertime (:-))
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 270 | View Replies]

To: drwoof
Once I realized that algebra (and all of math, really) is the language of the sciences (and thus, the key to solving some very, very interesting puzzles), I was hooked.

Sounds very similar to my experience. I took biology and chemistry to start with in high school. It wasn't until I took physics that I understood where the maths came into play. That's not to say that chemistry doesn't have some math involvement, but physics is VERY math heavy.

When I "get" something, I go full-bore into it, and once I "got" math and physics, I became a devotee. Despite my having degrees in English, I use math every day in computer programming, network pathing, and even home remodeling. I recently built an archway into a room after taking out a door and had to use trig to figure out how to make it work. I now have a beautiful archway into another room, and my wife has delegated me as the official math teacher for our yet-to-be-born homeschooled children.

279 posted on 07/29/2012 12:27:45 PM PDT by rarestia (It's time to water the Tree of Liberty.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 58 | View Replies]

To: wintertime

“If teachers, on average, have the lowest SAT, ACT, and GRE scores on campus, and you have a very**high** score, then what sort of scores to other teachers have in order to reach a **low** average?”

Zing!!!


280 posted on 07/29/2012 12:44:02 PM PDT by BobL ( It's easy to be a saint when you have nothing on the line)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 278 | View Replies]

To: rarestia

“...where the maths came into play...”

A little British lingo, for those of you in Rio Linda.


281 posted on 07/29/2012 12:45:04 PM PDT by BobL ( It's easy to be a saint when you have nothing on the line)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 279 | View Replies]

To: 9YearLurker

Yep, and employers are no longer allowed to give aptitude tests
^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^

Employers could use the SAT and ACT scores.

As it is now, the quality of college graduates is so unpredictable, that many employers are demanding internships before hiring.


282 posted on 07/29/2012 1:21:26 PM PDT by wintertime (:-))
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 275 | View Replies]

To: 9YearLurker
"Yep, and employers are no longer allowed to give aptitude tests"

Are intelligence tests also ruled out or are they considered aptitude tests? [there used to be programmer aptitude tests as well as IQ tests in the fifties]

283 posted on 07/29/2012 1:34:41 PM PDT by ex-snook (without forgiveness there is no Christianity)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 275 | View Replies]

To: stormer

I’m definitely a terribad when it comes to math, but wouldn’t ordinary long division suffice there?


284 posted on 07/29/2012 1:41:30 PM PDT by Fire_on_High (WTB new tagline, PST!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 241 | View Replies]

To: ex-snook

The closer you get to intelligence tests, the worse trouble you’re in. And I’d presume programming aptitude largely comes from intelligence?

The Holder Justice Department is pressing harder for employers to show that even the academic credentials they largely have used as proxies for intelligence must now show that they are more closely related to the actual requirements of the work.

I guess a ‘programming aptitude test’ at least had the right name to suggest such a correlation!

But as hard as we want to bash business for looking to hire trained employees, rather than take on high-potential trainees and provide the training themselves, we should recognize that hiring by accumulated skill is about the only safe hire in this environment.


285 posted on 07/29/2012 1:53:50 PM PDT by 9YearLurker
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 283 | View Replies]

To: Fire_on_High
In this case division is the operation by which you find the value; algebra is how you phrase the question. Without understanding the relationship between the variables (algebra), you can't solve the problem using arithmetic.
286 posted on 07/29/2012 1:56:00 PM PDT by stormer
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 284 | View Replies]

To: wintertime

“Employers could use the SAT and ACT scores...As it is now, the quality of college graduates is so unpredictable, that many employers are demanding internships before hiring.”

Yep, and my boss has said exactly that if I want him to consider my oldest kid. I guess he’s been burned enough by now.


287 posted on 07/29/2012 2:02:46 PM PDT by BobL ( It's easy to be a saint when you have nothing on the line)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 282 | View Replies]

To: CharlesWayneCT

Never was good at algebra. Just a dumb question here. In solving the area of a triangle is a=1/2bh equal to a=1/2hb equal to a=bh/2 ?


288 posted on 07/29/2012 2:04:07 PM PDT by Dust in the Wind (U S Troops Rock)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 150 | View Replies]

To: BobL
looks like... but in truth i never know when i'm using it like i do when i know i'm doing a trig problem etc as i don't need pencil and paper or a calculator or a program to get the answer where in algebra class it was all pencil and paper
289 posted on 07/29/2012 2:05:14 PM PDT by Chode (American Hedonist - *DTOM* -ww- NO Pity for the LAZY)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 232 | View Replies]

To: 9YearLurker
Thanks for post. "The closer you get to intelligence tests, the worse trouble you’re in. And I’d presume programming aptitude largely comes from intelligence?"

Logic would be a good aptitude for the programmer test but perhaps not a qualification to hold public office. {:-)

Of interest is today's statement that 'employers can't find qualified workers' when they can't test.

290 posted on 07/29/2012 2:13:13 PM PDT by ex-snook (without forgiveness there is no Christianity)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 285 | View Replies]

To: Chode

“but in truth i never know when i’m using it (Algebra)”

Yea, I saw that in your later posts. I agree. When it’s embedded in us, we simply don’t know we’re using it. Trig is definitely different, since we’re looking at sines and cosines, etc. But Algebra doesn’t own any symbols (other than, maybe, “x”, but we don’t even need to think about “x” when doing those problems).


291 posted on 07/29/2012 2:15:21 PM PDT by BobL ( It's easy to be a saint when you have nothing on the line)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 289 | View Replies]

To: CaptainK

People shouldn’t get a student loan until they can demonstrate those capabilities.


292 posted on 07/29/2012 2:18:26 PM PDT by Skepolitic
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 265 | View Replies]

To: wintertime

“By the way, given that you are so smart how can you stand being surrounded with ignorance?”

I like eating.


293 posted on 07/29/2012 2:21:38 PM PDT by JCBreckenridge (Texas, Texas, Whisky)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 278 | View Replies]

To: Reily

I know! LOL
But, the actual Algebra classes were all theoretical and about problem solving. Thing is 99% of the equations couldn’t be used for anything.

It was all about achieving a number.

Useless......For me....


294 posted on 07/29/2012 2:23:27 PM PDT by Vendome (Don't take life so seriously, you won't live through it anyway)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 207 | View Replies]

To: Dust in the Wind

Yeah, that’s transitivity.

It doesn’t matter what order you do it in.

1/2 x b x h = b x 1/2 x h = b x h x 1/2 = h x 1/2 x b = h x b x 1/2.

Think of it like a scale. You’ve got six weights, two are b, two are h, and two are 1/2.

B, H and 1/2 all weigh the same, it doesn’t matter what order you put them on.


295 posted on 07/29/2012 2:27:48 PM PDT by JCBreckenridge (Texas, Texas, Whisky)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 288 | View Replies]

To: yldstrk

I took self-guided Algebra in college and finished the course early with an “A.” I struggled through statistics because I had a teacher who should never have been in a class room. Finally had to ignore him and teach myself through the course, got a “B-” and was happy to get it.

Good teachers and curriculum make all the difference.


296 posted on 07/29/2012 2:29:05 PM PDT by CityCenter
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 9 | View Replies]

To: BlatherNaut

Well she is smart but primarily she is a very conscientious student! She would tell you that she just works harder then everyone else. One thing I have noticed regarding her she is very well organized when it comes to studying. Something I wasn’t when I was her age. She would say she does well because she works at it not because of any innate exceptional ability. Then she will claim that the average college student puts in so little effort, that any serious effort puts you way above them!

You should hear her chemistry TA stories!


297 posted on 07/29/2012 2:47:41 PM PDT by Reily
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 262 | View Replies]

To: Fresh Wind

You can’t achieve equality of outcome until the requirements are dumbed down to the least able student. Screw that. The schools are aiming to produce a shitty product. Defy them. Run circles around those union nitwits warming seats at the head of the classroom.


298 posted on 07/29/2012 3:09:27 PM PDT by Myrddin
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 47 | View Replies]

To: JCBreckenridge
Thank you. I remembered that area as 1/2 ??? and then saw in reading the first part of Lockharts Lament that if you box a rectangle inside its base line and height line its area is always one half that rectangles area. This would be no matter the shape of the triangle. My teachers may have taught this but years later I got why the 1/2. Go figure...I drive big rigs for a living; I do calculus and trig in my head all day long to survive.
299 posted on 07/29/2012 3:18:42 PM PDT by Dust in the Wind (U S Troops Rock)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 295 | View Replies]

To: JCBreckenridge

I like eating.
^^^^^^^^^^^

With all your brilliance you couldn’t find honorable work? Really?


300 posted on 07/29/2012 3:34:15 PM PDT by wintertime (:-))
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 293 | View Replies]


Navigation: use the links below to view more comments.
first previous 1-50 ... 151-200201-250251-300301-312 next last

Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.

Free Republic
Browse · Search
News/Activism
Topics · Post Article

FreeRepublic, LLC, PO BOX 9771, FRESNO, CA 93794
FreeRepublic.com is powered by software copyright 2000-2008 John Robinson