They can and will think about math

Posted on September 9, 2022

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Just helped a pre-algebra student with “translate the words,” with “two less than the product of 7 and hank’s savings, use s for hank’s savings.” I asked “what’s one less than 10?” “Nine.” “Did we do 1-10?” No. So, think: less comes last… 7s – 2. I went on to say “if it’s more than, then mathematically it should still go last but it doesn’t matter…” and the student says “because addition is…” and sorta gestures… and I fill in “commutative.” “Yes.”

Then there was the Math 124 stuff with absolute values, inequalities and we were wrestling with it and a random math professor came by and I just said “please, can you help?” And they proceeded to look at the problem and say *exactly* what the students had said 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂 going down exactly the same paths and turning around …. oh, now, we can’t do that…

(nope, it’s not everybody ;P )

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