Richard Hake
Posts:
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From:
Woodland Hills, CA 91367
Registered:
12/4/04


Re: Do We Learn All the Math We Need For Ordinary Life Before 5th Grade?
Posted:
Jan 15, 2013 1:50 PM



With no apologies for cross posting  see e.g. "CrossPosting  Synergistic or Sinful?" [Hake (2005)].
If you reply to this long (9 kB) post please don't hit the reply button unless you prune the copy of this post that may appear in your reply down to a few relevant lines, otherwise the entire already archived post may be needlessly resent to subscribers.
In response to my post "Do We Learn All the Math We Need For Ordinary Life Before 5th_Grade?" [Hake (2013)], math guru <http://bit.ly/Xbd0ye> Dave Renfro (2013a) in his MathTeach post wrote [bracketed by lines "RRRR. . . "; slightly edited; my insert at ". . . .[[insert]]. . . . "]:
RRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRR In my previous post "Do We Learn All the Math We Need For Ordinary Life Before 5th_Grade?" [Renfro (2013b)] I wrote:
". . . the fact that Hans Ohanian, author of "Einstein's Mistakes" [Ohanian (2009)], thought to recommend Courant's book to his wife, literature major Susan Ohanian <http://www.susanohanian.org>, strikes me as really naive and outoftouch. I'd like to say I'm stunned to find that a Ph.D. in physics would think Courant's book was appropriate for her, but unfortunately I'm not."
It occurs to me that it's easy to make a hitandrun criticism like this, and a bit difficult to offer an appropriate alternative. To this end, I think the following books would have worked better for her:
1. Silvanus Phillips Thompson, "Calculus Made Easy", 2nd edition, 1914. FREE at <http://www.gutenberg.org/files/33283/33283pdf.pdf>.
2. David Berlinski, "A Tour of the Calculus", 1997. <http://www.amazon.com/dp/0679747885> RRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRR
I reference "A Tour of the Calculus" [Berlinski (1997)] in my post "Do We Learn All the Math We Need For Ordinary Life Before 5th Grade?"
In my opinion, some other calculus texts (had they been available at the time) that might have worked better than Courant's book [e.g. Courant & John (1998)] for Susan Ohanian are:
3. "Calculus: An Intuitive and Physical Approach" Kline (1998).
4. "Basic Calculus: From Archimedes to Newton to it's Role in Science" [Hahn (1998).
5. "Applied Calculus" [HughesHallett et al. (2009)].
Richard Hake, Emeritus Professor of Physics, Indiana University Links to Articles: <http://bit.ly/a6M5y0> Links to Socratic Dialogue Inducing (SDI) Labs: <http://bit.ly/9nGd3M> Academia: <http://bit.ly/a8ixxm> Blog: <http://bit.ly/9yGsXh> GooglePlus: <http://bit.ly/KwZ6mE> Twitter: <http://bit.ly/juvd52>
"Mathematics is the gate and key of the sciences. . . .Neglect of mathematics works injury to all knowledge, since he who is ignorant of it cannot know the other sciences or the things of this world. And what is worse, men who are thus ignorant are unable to perceive their own ignorance and so do not seek a remedy." Roger Bacon (Opus Majus, bk. 1, ch. 4) <http://bit.ly/dzjbWv>
REFERENCES [URL shortened by <http://bit.ly/> and accessed on 15 Jan 2013.] Berlinski, D. 1997. "Tour of the Calculus." Random House, publisher's information at <http://bit.ly/ZLSHJo>. Amazon.com information at <http://amzn.to/11sZIUv>, note the searchable "Look Inside" feature. An expurgated Google book preview is online at <http://bit.ly/UI4kPC>.
Courant, R. & F. John. 1998. "Introduction to Calculus and Analysis," Vol. 1, Springer, originally published in 1965. Amazon.com information at <http://amzn.to/MqvtkP> note the searchable "Look Inside" feature.
Hahn, A.J. 1998. "Basic Calculus: From Archimedes to Newton to it's Role in Science." Springer. Amazon.com information at <http://amzn.to/LaakMh>. For a review see the late physicist David Halliday (1999).
Hake, R.R. 2005. "CrossPosting  Synergistic or Sinful?" Post of 1 Nov 2005 08:37:120800 to ITFORUM and AERAL. Online at on the OPEN! AERAL archives at <http://bit.ly/arFlkd>.
Hake, R.R. 2013. "Do We Learn All the Math We Need For Ordinary Life Before 5th Grade?" online on the OPEN! AERAL archives at <http://bit.ly/10sYmKl>. Post of 13 Jan 2013 16:52:010800 to AERAL and NetGold. The abstract and link to the complete post are being transmitted to several discussion lists and are also on my blog "Hake'sEdStuff" at <http://bit.ly/RQkucu> with a provision for comments.
Halliday, D. 1999. Review of Hahn (1998), Phys. Today 52(4): 74; online to subscribers at <http://bit.ly/LbalBm>. Halliday wrote: "The author, a professor of mathematics at the University of Notre Dame, has used this book in a twosemester calculus sequence 'for arts and letters honors students' and a onesemester course of 'elementary applications of the calculus for regular arts and letters students and architecture majors.' It seems to me that the book is very suitable for such courses. It is perhaps less suitable for a course in which the aim is to learn calculus as a tool and the desire is 'to get on with it,' without exploring historical byways."
HughesHallett, D., P.F. Lock, A.M. Gleason, D.E. Flath, S.P. Gordon, D.O. Lomen, D. Lovelock, W.G. McCallum, B.G. Osgood, A. Pasquale, J. TecoskyFeldman, J. Thrash, K.R. Rhea, & T.W. Tucker. 2009. "Applied Calculus." Wiley, fourth edition, publisher's information at <http://bit.ly/Kl2qQz> Amazon.com information at <http://amzn.to/KiDnvH>, note the searchable "Look Inside" feature. For other books by HughesHallett, et al. see <http://amzn.to/HWUcQV>.
Kline, M. 1998. "Calculus: An Intuitive and Physical Approach." Dover. Amazon.com information at <http://amzn.to/LsOYKC>, note the searchable "Look Inside" feature. First published in 1967.
Ohanian. H.C. 2009. "Einstein's Mistakes: The Human Failings of Genius." W.W. Norton, publisher's information at <http://bit.ly/13quVq3.>. Amazon.com information at <http://amzn.to/11qwxlb>, note the searchable "Look Inside" feature. See also Weinberg (2005).
Renfro, D.L. 2013a. "Re: Do We Learn All the Math We Need For Ordinary Life Before 5th Grade?" online on the OPEN! MathTeach archives at <http://bit.ly/V2aR9q>. Post of 15 Jan 10:23 AM (the MathForum fails to specfy the time zone).
Renfro, D.L. 2013b. " Do We Learn All the Math We Need For Ordinary Life Before 5th Grade?" online on the OPEN! MathTeach archives at <http://bit.ly/W4bLB5>. Post of 14 Jan 4:27 PM (the MathForum fails to specfy the time zone).
Weinberg, S. 2005. "Einstein's Mistakes: Science sets itself apart from other paths to truth by recognizing that even its greatest practitioners sometimes err," Physics Today, November, pp. 3135; online as a 336 kB pdf at <http://bit.ly/VSyoLL>>

