No magic paper

Posted on July 9, 2013


… so the pen got here, but not the paper. NOt a big deal ’cause it’s a little busy and I can plan and prepare and.. and…
and I’m thinking about a neat “parentheses” and “order of operations” lesson (not for the pre-pre-algebra, I don’t *think.*) I’m thinking of situations where you subtract a series of thigns; you could either subtract them one at a time *or* add up all the stuff you’re going to subtract and then subtract the total. Once folks grok that there are these two different approaches that get you the same thing, we could talk about writing their stories in math language… and maybe speculate on situations where one or the other would be easier to figure out, per Jo Boaler’s _What’s Math Got To Do With It_ explanation about the importance of getting students to “decompose” numbers (e.g., to figure out 97 + 35 by stealing three from the 35 to give to the 97 to make it a hundred, adn then having 32 left to add to it — but first, our fokls are going to have to get comfy with 100 + 32, since many of ’em will be reaching for that calculator… you know, the one we should be letting them use so the arithmetic doesn’t slow them down…except when it does, and except when no, you don’t know what the right answer should look like, so when you punch in 8 instead of .8 you just write down the answer and keep moving…).

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