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"You'll never use algebra in real life."

Anonymous
Posted by Anonymous
  • 138 Replies
5 moms liked this

Why is this type of thought still circulating? Nowadays there are many jobs that use mathematics, and treating it as something horrible, hated, or unnecessary seems dumb to me.

Want to know what jobs have virtually 0% unemployment? Astronomers and engineers. Want to know what they have to know? Math. Why do so many people treat algebra and other forms of higher math as though it's completely unnecessary, pointless, and dumb, when nowadays it isn't? I see so many people fussing over this and that for their kids to learn, but never math. Do you agree that this needs to change?

Posted by Anonymous on Feb. 19, 2013 at 10:33 PM
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Replies (1-10):
Anonymous
by Anonymous 2 on Feb. 19, 2013 at 10:35 PM
12 moms liked this
Are you a mathochist?
EveyTri
by on Feb. 19, 2013 at 10:36 PM
2 moms liked this

I've never used algebra as an adult.

I've used geometry, but not algebra. And nothing from any kind of math that cannot be done with a calculator.

wilesmomma
by Gold Member on Feb. 19, 2013 at 10:36 PM
1 mom liked this

People do not want to take the time to learn math. "It's hard" is often an excuse. It's really not if you just sit down and have it explained to you in a way that makes sense. If there were more awesome teachers out there I don't think this would be a common conception.

Anonymous
by Anonymous 1 - Original Poster on Feb. 19, 2013 at 10:39 PM

No. In fact I'm not good at math at all. Because I was always told algebra wasn't important...

Quoting Anonymous:

Are you a mathochist?


Anonymous
by Anonymous 3 on Feb. 19, 2013 at 10:39 PM
2 moms liked this

I use higher mathematics every day at work.  I don't understand the American aversion to math.

US students rank 32nd in math.  That is just sad.  Less than 1/3rd of US students perform at the "proficient" level in math.  A "proficient" level  is considered the most minimally acceptable level.  

Shanghai had the highest math proficiency rating, more than double the US proficiency.


Let's face it - our children suck at math.

robyann
by on Feb. 19, 2013 at 10:40 PM
1 mom liked this

We may not use Algebra in our everyday lives, but it's more than just math. It is a way of thinking, comprehending the concepts, following the formulas. It teaches abstract thinking. 

My dd is a jr in high school, she is planning to become an elementary math teacher. She just gets it lol 

Anonymous
by Anonymous 1 - Original Poster on Feb. 19, 2013 at 10:40 PM

But just because you didn't use it doesn't mean that there shouldn't be better math literacy. If you can get a kid passionate about math, and have it click in their head, they could be headed to an amazing career. High school is supposed to prepare kids for whatever direction they'll go. I feel like math is often thrown aside.

Quoting EveyTri:

I've never used algebra as an adult.

I've used geometry, but not algebra. And nothing from any kind of math that cannot be done with a calculator.


ColtsFan1912
by FriendoftheFoot on Feb. 19, 2013 at 10:40 PM

Thus why I am not an astronomer. *sigh*  I really wanted to be one but I suck at numbers. They get all mixed up in my head.

littlemonaghan
by Gold Member on Feb. 19, 2013 at 10:40 PM
2 moms liked this
Should we change the phrase to, unless you want a career with math, you'll never use algebra"
Because everyone else not in a math intensive career, probably will never need to use anything more than addition, subtraction, multiplication and division.
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EveyTri
by on Feb. 19, 2013 at 10:41 PM

Heh, it always will be for me! I get that it's not too hard for most people, but my parents had to hire tutor after tutor and make me work with teacher after teacher, just to get me to pass math through school. And there were some phenomenal teachers in that bunch. They could probably teach a chimp to do algebra easier than they taught me, but hey, I passed enough to graduate and go to college.

Thing is, I wasn't even math averse. I didn't hate it on principle, it wasn't the worst thing ever. I was just plain bad at it. I tried hard throughout school and while I passed, I passed because the teachers and tutors held my hand to it every step of the way and invariably, the moment that particular material was no longer on the test, I completely forgot it. Which meant I had to re-learn everything, every year and every time a new concept was introduced.

And in all honesty... I never really "learned" math in the sense of understanding the process. I studied so much that I learned the answer to every possible problem, or at least something close enough to it that I could figure it out or narrow it down if I was lucky enough to get multi-choice.

Quoting wilesmomma:

People do not want to take the time to learn math. "It's hard" is often an excuse. It's really not if you just sit down and have it explained to you in a way that makes sense. If there were more awesome teachers out there I don't think this would be a common conception.



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