## Spinning, spinning…

November 25, 2013

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I got a spam comment on a 2007 post on my Google blog — it was creepier than average spam, since it was text generated so it really looked like content and didn’t even seem to actually want me to click anywhere, so… why?     It was interesting to read my speculations about the […]

## Slant and Slate

November 23, 2013

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On my twitter feed was a link to this article on Slate about Sebastian Thrun http://www.slate.com/articles/life/education/2013/11/sebastian_thrun_and_udacity_distance_learning_is_unsuccessful_for_most_students.html       Slate tends to have its biases against “big biz” education so it’s possible that the quotes here are carefully selected, but they confirm my gut feeling from listening to him talk about math in Jo Boaler’s “How […]

## “Same idea, different name” — radical concept!

November 18, 2013

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In our basic math class, we spend a fair amount of time at the beginning with the idea that the equals sign isn’t just that thing that comes before the answer. In the spirit of starting with a fairly simple abstraction, we use the analogy that a person can be called different names, but still […]

## sometimes it’s not about the concepts …

November 14, 2013

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Need to remember that wading through a zillion steps conceptually is not reasonable and is, I would venture, pretty much the reason math was invented.    The SIQ (student in question ;)) would “get” taking cube roots of powers, and then it would leave. Rebuild concept… makes sense. NExt problem… it’s gone. Until, “wait a […]

## Hazards of Curriculum Shift

November 6, 2013

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I wonder if things would have been more carefully executed if the course I’m helping students with had been more, um, radically changed. Today’s problem:   Two planes leave simultaneously, one going south and one going east.   AFter the plane going east had gone 50 miles further than the plane going south, it was […]

## The root of theproblem…

November 5, 2013

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… almost lost points on that last CSC 140 lab.  He’d given us this wonderful metaphor of not giving too much information when setting up a class because it would be “like having an egg in the recipe card” (or cement in your blueprint)… so I didn’t give my object reference variables actual values, but […]