Monday, November 28, 2011

Not Just For Special Occasions...

In my geometry class, I'm trying to keep their algebra skills fresh (AND exciting!), so lately I've brought back lines: find the equation of a line parallel to ____ going through point ____; find 4 points on the line ______; etc. I reviewed point-slope form, slope-intercept form, standard form.

Well, many students came in for tutoring and were stuck on this problem:
Find 4 points on the line 3x + 2y = 12.

Them: "I don't know what to do."
Me: "How many points on a line?"
Them: "Infinity."
Me: "Yes, infinITE. What do you think is true about this equation and any point on this line."
Them: chirp chirp of crickets.

Me: explanation, showing, bla bla bla.
Them: "oh yea" .... work furiously.
Them: "I'm stuck. I can't find any more."
Me: looking and seeing that they have guessed and checked their capacity of integer valued (x,y) values.
Me: "Just pick an x and solve for y."
Them: "I tried, and NOTHING ELSE WORKS!"
Me: "Decimals and Fractions! They're not just for special occasions."
Them: "Oh, I didn't know you could have non-integer points."


  1. Mine hate fractions so much they would rather have me cut their hair.

  2. "how do you do fractions on here?" one kid said while holding up his concept that a fraction can be turned into a decimal

  3. Special occasions LOL. This post is an instant classic. Peace.

  4. I got another one the other day:
    "This problem can't be done. 15 can't be divided by 9!"

  5. ER: Oy! I don't know a fix I can maintain .... ALL problems I give are fractions?


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