
Re: A statement on what is wrong with standard calculus
Posted:
Sep 21, 2004 11:26 AM


My concern with the growing chorus of people who say that they believe that a solid basis of algebra is not necessary for what comes next is that the people who are saying this already have a solid understanding of algebra. They can't put themselves in the shoes of someone trying to make sense of calculus without the algebra intuition that these believers themselves had as a prerequisite. Sure derive/mathematica/etc. will perform the algebraic manipulaltions we all struggled to learn how to do  will do them quicker and more accurately than any of us can do them  and so forth, but until you've been there and done that yourself, the computer is like one big black box  that does mysterious and marvelous things. I think the use of technology ought to make people more powerful than they already are  not paper over weaknesses.
Joan Reinthaler Sidwell Friends School

