Tall, Dark, and Mysterious

3/23/2005

Unfortunately, I am not the protagonist of a feel-good movie

File under: Those Who Can't, Know Thyself. Posted by Moebius Stripper at 7:39 am.

Ortega: If we fail? You can’t teach logarithms to illiterates. Look, these kids come to us with barely a seventh grade education.

Next week, I will be teaching logarithms in my precalculus class.

I know, blogging about it only makes it worse

File under: Those Who Can't, Meta-Meta, Queen of Sciences. Posted by Moebius Stripper at 7:12 am.

A few weeks ago, I wrote about the wholly indefensible ubiquity of the TI-83+ graphing calculator in high school classrooms. Sure, such powerful calculators had their uses, I said, but most of the owners of these beasts have no real need for them, and they’re doing more harm than good in the hands of their high-school-age owners. (To wit: over at Joanne Jacobs’, someone is suggesting that I explain multiplication of algebraic expressions by comparing it to long multiplication of positive integers, “which [my students] likely understood by grade eight”. I wish. These are kids who will reach into their bag and extract their calculators when I ask them to multiply single-digit numbers together.)

Anyway, since I am right, my screed has not attracted anyone searching for such phrases as “compute covariance on TI-83+” or “polar coordinates graphing calculator”, even though I used all of those words on the same page. However, in the past week, TD&M has absorbed droves of people googling the phrase “how to make a penis graph on a TI-83″. Check it out - I’m number six. And seven. Back on February 28 I did indeed mention both the penis and the TI-83+, but apparently five people did so even more relevantly than I.

None of the more highly-ranked links provided the necessary instructions, though, so I’ll give it a go. Never let it be said that I don’t take my job as an educator seriously. I’m not an expert on either the penis or the TI-83, but here’s my best guess: in order to make a penis graph on a TI-83+, you’ll have to read Chapters 1, 3, 4, and 5 of the manual to find out how to graph functions by conventional means. Then, you’ll have to get really excited about your calculator, and it helps if you have above-average motor skills in areas that few take the time to develop.

Not that I really see the point. Me, I just use my hands.