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Geometry Question

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When your students take Geometry, do you require them to memorize the postulates and theorems? I am trying to determine how important this is as compared to allowing my dd to use a list of the postulates and theorems she has learned so far.


On one hand, if she has them all memorized and knows them in and out, she should have more understanding and be better able to reason through proofs. On the other hand, it is simply a ton of information to know and be able to recall when needed.




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My dd wrote each of them on index cards. When doing her lessons, she used these cards to find the appropriate reasons. By having to look them up, and write them each time, she memorized them. Tests were taken without them. I thought it was important to have them memorized, but in hindsight, I'm not so sure. I think the process of thinking through a problem and coming up with the solution and knowing how to apply them is more important than memorizing them.


This probably didn't help at all. :tongue_smilie:

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I teach Geometry online.

The first few chapters I will have the students memorize the 'rules'. The students compile a notebook as they progress through the text--it 'should' contain any definitions, postulates, theorems, corollaries... beginning with the chapter 4 test they will be allowed to use the notebook... there will just be too many to remember by then!


In the back of most texts there is a list of postulates, theorems... I suggest that the students photocopy these pages and add to their notebook. These are usually organized--so that when they work chapter 5, they will know that anything listed from chapters 1-5 can be included on the test/proofs.


My class is application based--so each chapter emphasizes the application of the 'rules' and reinforces them with the proofs.

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Thanks. We are doing basically the same thing - using paper instead of note cards. Unfortunately, I do not think my dd is remembering well enough on the tests. My idea right now is to slow down and go back to make sure she has them solidly memorized and understood so that she can use them. I am just afraid of overkill.

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That sounds like a good plan. My dd has been using the lists in the back of the book. And you are right - there are just so may theorems and postulates.


She is my oldest, and she loved math until this year, so I guess I just want to make sure we are doing the right thing.

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