We boxed in the garage with the door open and the tunes blasting, took the focus mitts out to the driveway and hit each other, then came in and ordered Dominoes sandwiches for delivery. I also got chocolate lava cake. I ate one after my sandwich, which means I’ve got one left for later. X-Games France is on the TV and I’m getting ready to game.
I am walking around helping students on a Friday afternoon. I see someone shopping for shoes or screwing around on facebook. I think to myself, “I wish I could screw around on the internet when I’m in class.” Then I get done answering questions and come up to the front and get on tumblr. ;-)
My awesome spring break has ruined me for work. Seriously.
PEDMAS? Is that like BODMAS? Order of operations? If so, yes. And I think I was also taught to cross multiply.PEMDAS is order of operations (except, you know, not very good order of operations). I am curious though, what do B and O stand for? I’m guessing that you all have different words for things.
I’ve felt silly for writing down 5 or 6 steps instead of 2 or 3 but then when teachers skip over them I get confused :(I very much dislike those teachers. They probably also taught you to use PEMDAS and cross multiply. Bastards! The longer I do my job, the more I dislike every math teacher my students have had before me…
Do you want another math secret? I thought you would.
Write shit down. Seriously. Write shit down.
At least once a class I’m helping someone with a problem and they tell the answer to a question. I tell them they should write that down. They tell me they will remember it. We start on the next step and they ask me what the got on the last step. I ask them what they just wrote down, I get a look from them, and then I tell them “damn, looks like we are going to have to start at the beginning.” They don’t like this. ;-)
Honestly, write shit down. You can NEVER have too many steps written down. Not only does it help you keep track of what you just did, but it gives you a record of what you have done. So, in say a month, when you get another problem like this one, you can look back and see what you did. Also, writing something down, even if you never look back at it, helps you learn and remember. Writing is a double input when learning (unlike listening, which is just a single input) because when you write something down, you are reading it simultaneously. Writing is a VERY powerful way to learn.
If you happen to be one of my students, and I tell you to write something down, and you don’t, you are seriously screwed. ‘Cuz if I go through the trouble of teaching you something and say, “now you should write all of that down so you have it.” and then you ask me about it five minutes later, I’m gonna tell you to look at the notes you just took. If you don’t have them, I’m gonna tell you that you are screwed and you should make friends with someone who writes things down.
Seriously, I am a complete bitch of a teacher if you are a lazy student. I don’t put up with that shit.
Here it is. I’m gonna reveal it to all of you.
Every new piece of math uses old pieces of math. Math just builds on itself. Algebra uses arithmetic, calculus uses algebra, differential equations uses calculus, linear algebra uses lots of stuff…
This is true at any scale. Addition is just lots of counting, multiplication is just lots of addition, fractions are just another way to write and think about division.
So, say you don’t like a part of math. Let’s go with fractions, that is a popular topic to not like. So, when you have to do them, you muddle through as best you can and promptly tell yourself (and usually everyone else) that you are so glad it is over so you can forget about them. Sorry Charlie, ‘cuz you need fractions for decimals, and percents, and ratios, and proportions, and linear equations, and rational expression, and rational exponents, and calculus, and differential equations (seriously, if you don’t understand elementary school fractions by the time you hit differential equations, you are so screwed).
It annoys the hell out of me when a student comes up to me and just wants “the formula” so they can “do this problem.” Which is usually code for, “I don’t actually want to have to think at all to do this problem.” First, there usually isn’t “a formula” like the student wants. They want a magic code so they don’t have to think. Sorry, it doesn’t exist. Second, I will NEVER just tell a student how to do the problem. EVER. Because I understand that they need to understand all of the pieces in order to understand what they are doing now and what they are going to do next. I don’t really care if they don’t like fractions, they need to understand them in order to do almost everything else. I will go back to fractions (or whatever other fundamental principles they need) EVERY SINGLE TIME until they understand them. There are very often students who just get pissed off when I do this and stop listening.
To those students I really want to say: If you don’t want to understand; If you don’t want to learn; Seriously, get out of my class. I’m only interested in you learning the math, not in your gpa or your financial aid or you making your parents happy with a passing grade. I am here because I want to help people learn what they need to learn and understand what they need to understand. Not to hand out busy work and grades.
I don’t say that, but I REALLY want to.
I didn’t mean that to be a rant, but it turned into one.
Also, we found out yesterday that our season tickets are good at all stadiums. So we can go to any game. Since the team moved to the Lone Star Football League this year, that means that the farthest away they play is a 12 hour drive. I am only working Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays this summer. The games are almost always on Saturdays. We are going to go to away games this year like no ones business. :-D
We went to Zion National Park where we:
- hiked a bunch
- went on a horse-back tour
- stayed at an awesome resort with an amazing room (there was a bidet, a jetted tub, a shower for 8, a kitchen, a living room, a balcony…)
- hiked a bunch more
- bought pretty rocks
- ate awesome meals
- acknowledged and accepted that we aren’t as young as we used to be
- found that kickboxing really has gotten us into better shape
- had wonderful drives to and from (I love our road trips)
We came home to our puppies. I love coming home to the puppies.
We ran some errands in Albuquerque. We planned on the zoo, but all the schools were on spring break as well, so it was beyond packed. We ended up at the natural history museum instead. It is a lot of fun. Why do I forget that? We then went to Coldstone Creamery. Neither of us had been before. It was good.
Then we had our season ticket holder party for the New Mexico Stars. It was awesome. We got to reconnect with fans from last season and some of our favorite players, as well as meet some new guys. We also got in on the ground floor of the future boosters club. I am so excited about that.
Saturday we got to not leave the house and do nothing, followed by eventually getting to watch the first Stars game live (once America One got their shit together…). They won, and they looked good! It was sooooooo exciting. We almost decided to go to the Amarillo game this weekend, but there is just too much that needs to be done. I am PUMPED for football! Pumped I tell you.
Then I went back to work yesterday. I am still on such a high from spring break that it isn’t even that much of a bummer.
Can spring break be like three weeks? That would be awesome.
Tropico 4 is not helping me get things done.
Neither is Tumblr…
I love pledge a picket.