tag:blogger.com,1999:blog-6555947.post111660631316039344..comments2014-01-12T10:46:48.153-07:00Comments on The Geomblog: Math education and the illusion of certaintySuresh Venkatasubramaniannoreply@blogger.comBlogger3125tag:blogger.com,1999:blog-6555947.post-1116835550168361322005-05-23T02:05:00.000-06:002005-05-23T02:05:00.000-06:00"You come to math expecting to memorize expression..."You come to math expecting to memorize expressions, and do things A CERTAIN WAY. For various pedagogical reasons, none of which I am competent to discuss, teachers often encourage this approach..."<BR/><BR/>I believe the word you're looking for is INCOMPETENCE.<BR/><BR/>I did a bit of high-school math tutoring when I was in college. I was always amazed how quickly the kids would pick up a new topic once we found/derived the right way for THEM to think about it. ("Why didn't they just explain it that way the first time?") Unfortunately, I had to warn them to translate their answers into the form the teacher expected, or they woudn't get credit. <BR/><BR/><A></A><A></A>Posted by<A><B> </B></A><A HREF="http://3dpancakes.typepad.com/ernie/" REL="nofollow" TITLE="jeffe at cs dot uiuc dot edu">JeffE</A>Anonymousnoreply@blogger.comtag:blogger.com,1999:blog-6555947.post-1116728049175478692005-05-21T20:14:00.000-06:002005-05-21T20:14:00.000-06:00I have also always lamented this approach to mathe...I have also always lamented this approach to mathematics. Whenever I've read theorem A or B it just seems so desolate not knowing WHY someone was motivated to come up with this. They only give you the end result and almost never the justification for it. <BR/><BR/><A></A><A></A>Posted by<A><B> </B></A>AnonymousAnonymousnoreply@blogger.comtag:blogger.com,1999:blog-6555947.post-1116625049148533582005-05-20T15:37:00.000-06:002005-05-20T15:37:00.000-06:00This is also true in how physics is taught. When ...This is also true in how physics is taught. When I took high school physics i had the option of 'conceptual physics' or 'mathematical physics.' Being more math inclined I opted for the mathematical version, as did many of my like-minded peers. However, it turned out that the mathematical physics meant that we learned the basic formulas and then solved problems by plugging in the correct numbers, whereas in the conceptual physics, the students learned the intuition for the formulas and were then shown them. As someone mathematically inclined, I could have easily plugged numbers into the formulas and would have more easily understood how to with the proper intuition.  <BR/><BR/><A></A><A></A>Posted by<A><B> </B></A><A HREF="http://www.cs.duke.edu/~jeffp" REL="nofollow" TITLE="">Jeff</A>Anonymousnoreply@blogger.com