Month: November 2005

Grading on a curve

In her latest post on Learning Curves, Rudbeckia Hirta describes two methods of grading: Around here there are two schools of thought for grading calculus classes: straight percentages or curving the grades. I favor the former with each letter grade… Read More ›

Dimensional analysis

On tonight’s All Things Considered on NPR, Congressman Mike Sodrel (Republican of Indiana) says: The information that I get is, like most of my constituents, one-dimensional: it’s flat screen, flat paper. I wanted to see it 3-D.

Student rights

Students in public high schools and middle schools should know their legal rights — as well as the risks they may be taking when attempting to exercise their rights. The Electronic Frontier Foundation has an excellent FAQ on the subject…. Read More ›

A college perspective

Check out two fascinating posts — one yesterday, one today — from the pseudonymous Rudbeckia Hirta. Both of them lament the state of mathematical knowledge of college freshmen and ask what we high-school teachers are teaching them. Of course her… Read More ›


Popco, by Scarlett Thomas. I’m a perfect audience for this book, but I’m obviously not the intended audience for Allison Block, the ALA reviewer on Mathematical puzzles. Mind-bending codes. A secret manuscript. And a cake recipe, too. Thomas’ latest… Read More ›

The value of projects

Are projects valuable for students in a high-school math class? I suppose the answer must inevitably be, “Sometimes they are, sometimes they aren’t.” OK, so we need to shift the terms of the question. We should ask, What kinds of… Read More ›