[Edu-sig] creating an interface vs. using one (Michel Paul)

Andy Judkis ajudkis at verizon.net
Sat Sep 23 13:20:49 CEST 2006

My daughter is a senior, taking AB Calc and struggling with it somewhat. 
I'm becoming alarmed as I realize how little mathematical intuition she has 
developed.  She used to be good at it, but now she really needs the 
calculator to tell her how numbers and functions behave.  Very frustrating 
to both of us -- she's come to hate math, and I haven't been able to get her 
to consider that it is worthwhile, builds strong mental muscles, etc. And 
she's an intellectual kid, well above average in math (if SATs are any 
guide) and in a pretty good school system.  So what are most kids getting?

I think all the points you make are very thoughtful and interesting to me, 
but I doubt many HS math teachers are going to have any sense -at all- of 
what OO means, let alone why it matters.  I'm a tech guy, not a math guy, 
and I don't quite understand where OO fits into math education, but I 
believe you when you say it does.  A few concrete examples would help me 
understand, and might help make your case.

Let me reveal my ignorance (there's a lot of it!) and ask if Python has a 
way to plot a function that's as easy as on the TI.  Without that I think 
it's going to be a very tough sale, unfortunately.

Finally, let me say that I really appreciate the tone of your message.  Your 
sincerity and humility really comes through.  I'm sure you're going to 
continue to encounter plenty of frustration with the math faculty but I 
think you will make some headway, and inspire a lot of kids too.

Andy Judkis
Oceanport, NJ

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