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lewelma

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lewelma last won the day on April 8 2014

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About lewelma

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    New Zealand
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  1. lewelma

    Writing out math problems

    In NZ, the national assessment is called "applying algebraic procedures in solving problems" so if you solve the problem without using algebraic procedures you can't pass the test. The goal is not to get a correct answer, the goal is to learn how to apply algebraic procedures in solving problems. As to how to teach this, I'll try to write more about that later.
  2. Med schools in NZ require the equivalent of AP Stats rather than calculus.
  3. lewelma

    Writing out math problems

    Sure. Basically, any word problem that asks you to form an equation. You can get the answer using primary school methods, but when being tested for an algebra exam, the goal is to code it into algebra so that you develop the skills required as the problems get harder. For example Amy bought two seedlings for her garden. One variety was 8cm tall when she bought it and grew at a rate of 2.5 cm per week. The other variety was 5 cm tall and grew at a rate of 3 cm each week. After a certain number of weeks the two seedlings were the same height. Form an equation to work out when the two seedlings were the same height. My students would not know that you *multiply* 2.5 by the number of weeks. So they don't know to write that term as 2.5w. So can't write the equation 8+2.5w=5+3w. Their approach would be guess and check, and if required to show their work, they would put it into a table if you were lucky. Basically, they would see it as repeated addition 8+2.5=10.5; 10.5+2.5=13, and they would just go up on each side until the two answers matched. If the word problem required 2 decimal accuracy, they would be in trouble. All of my students are particularly bad at recognizing division, as they see it as repeated addition to get up to an answer because that is easier to do in your head.
  4. lewelma

    Arabic as a major in college ?

    My nephew is studying Arabic and Near East Studies at Princeton. He is currently on scholarship in Jordan in an immersion program.
  5. lewelma

    Accepting and Declining

    DS accepted early and lost out on an unknown scholarship from another school because he had accepted before the scholarship was awarded. If you are second on the list for a scholarship, you don't hear about it until the first person turns it down.
  6. My SIL's brother makes games for a living. Have you ever heard of Betrayal at House on the Hill? He was a English professor, but once he started making more money on royalties on his games than as a professor, he retired from teaching to make games. 🙂 It also sounds to me like he doesn't know what impresses universities, because I definitely think he could sell his passions if he wanted to. But I'm not sure he should care given that he has a school that will take him and parents who can pay. This means he can do what he loves and let the chips fall where they may.
  7. we were writing at the same time. Wasn't sure if you saw my previous post. 🙂
  8. What I don't like to see is that your son feels that games are not good enough because he thinks a university won't be impressed. I would encourage him to turn this around. Games are a wonderful way to develop the soft skills required for all endeavors. Games are what helped my ds be able to argue without alienating someone, to handle disaster with a smile on his face, to manage a room full of kids when he was dungeon master. I would get your ds to rethink what he is learning in this gaming group, and celebrate it for what it is -- fun!
  9. I really think it is how you sell it. I wrote about his Win Tsung in my counselor letter. Please don't quote: removed for privacy
  10. Well, my ds wrote 1 of his 5 essays for MIT on how he loves to play board games and parlor games like Mafia. It never occurred to us that playing games was not something a university would be interested in. Games are social, strategic, and fun.
  11. FYI: MIT currently offers a stretch univariate Calculus course for incoming freshman. It lasts autumn term plus the additional 1 month January term (IAP). So not all freshman getting into MIT are strong in their calculus foundation, and need an extra month to get through the content beyond a standard university-length term.
  12. Integrated maths here in NZ. 8th, 9th, and 10th grade for Algebra/Geometry/Statistics - so 3 high school math courses completed by end of 10th grade for everyone. What is nice about this approach: 1) the content is reviewed each year which helps retention and 2) in 8th grade only the easy algebra/geometry/stats content is taught, then moderate content in 9th, and advanced content in 10th. This leads to a stronger foundation in all three. Ruth in NZ
  13. I loved re-reading this. Wow, I wrote clearly that day. 🙂
  14. lewelma

    Math Phobia in a globally gifted child

    My son was this way. He told me once that teaching was cheating. He would NOT let me teach him math. He had to puzzle it out himself, and there were days when it was so hard that he would cry in frustration. But he still wouldn't let me help. But he was so driven, and loved math so much that I decided to stay out of the way. Only later did I find out that he thought using a textbook explanation was also cheating. So I'm not quite sure how he learned fractions or any primary school math, I guess trial and error and the answers in the back of the book. He used the Intensive Practice books in Singapore Maths because he had to do math in word problem format as he would NOT EVER drill. EVER. With a child who is dreading math, the first thing I would do is stop Singapore Math for a bit, find a different program to use that would be suitable for self teaching, and let her self teach. What about Dragonbox for an algebra introduction, or people talk about some hands on geometry program (Patty paper geometry?). Something that is designed to be learned intuitively. Get the love back. And then slowly reintroduce her to Singapore math, and see if she can self-teach. When my son was self-teaching, one of the requirements I had was if there were tears, you had to stop for 5 minutes. And if you were really frustrated (and I could tell), you had to let me teach you *very briefly* about the topic. At one point I hid his math books until he would agree to my terms. Mental health is just as important as physical health. And crying over math is not OK from my point of view. Good Luck! Ruth in NZ
  15. We are doing a study of humor. So have watched TV shows like Gilligan's Island and movies like Galaxy Quest. As far as I'm concerned, ALL movies can count as school if you discuss the characterization, themes, settings, etc. For us, we ask, why was that funny? What would happen if xxx character was not on the show? What kind of humor is this - farce, slapstick, satire, parody, etc. How can we tell? How does this movie compare to others? Why was this funny for the era? Why is it not funny now? etc. So much fun in movies. Snuggle up on a sofa and enjoy your child! Ruth in NZ ETA: we are currently off our humor topic and watching Downton Abbey. And DS saw something I never had. Have you ever wondered about the dog in the beginning? My son said the dog is loyal to Lord Grantham, just as Lord Grantham is loyal to Downton Abbey which is pictured behind him in the frame. LOVE IT! So I will put discussing symbolism on the above list as well.
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