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Topic: Mathematica as a New Approach to Teaching Maths
Replies: 4   Last Post: Jul 30, 2012 10:16 PM

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Jakub Serych

Posts: 51
Registered: 1/27/08
Re: Mathematica as a New Approach to Teaching Maths
Posted: Jul 27, 2012 5:00 AM
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I'm teaching technical subjects (from area of electronics and data transfer) on high school level. There are at least two great pros for using Mathematica in my subjects:

1) You can prepare "hands on" exercises with a lot of "what if" questions for abstract processes (like for example complex modulations or A/D conversion in my case). It would be very difficult to prepare it on the real devices in laboratory and it has at least the same demonstration value using Mathematica. And in addition the best students can easily take a look "under the hood" of the process analysing the code of such exercise.

2) You can use some parts of university level mathematics on the high school, because you have the tool to make difficult calculations. It's great because for example in electronics there are many situations, in which students can easily build differential equations. The problem on high school is, that they cannot solve them - but if you have Mathematica, you can postpone the weight of the solution to it. I think that the side effect of this use also is the bigger motivation for studying mathematics later.

Of course, you can use Mathematica in thousands another ways in teaching process, it's realy great! But in my opinion very important condition is to have unlimited school license, so the students can have Mathematica installed not only in the school, but on their own computers at home. That gives you the necessary freedom to use this perfect tool.

Jakub Serych

> -----Original Message-----
> From: amzoti []
> Sent: Thursday, July 26, 2012 9:33 AM
> To:
> Subject: Mathematica as a New Approach to Teaching Maths
> Hi All,
> I just watched what is probably considered a hot button topic issue by some
> from "Conrad Wolfram's recent TED talk "Stop teaching calculating, start
> teaching math".
> I was wondering if any Mathematica users have ever explored this and how
> they may be approaching it.
> I love the idea of teaching students to use Mathematica as an exploratory
> tool which allows them to ask what if questions for learning to problem solve
> and to ask better questions.
> Has anyone developed or researched an approach to replace the traditional
> teaching methods (crank out silly answers) at any level?
> It would be great if Mathematica could even suggest such as approach!
> Anyway, would love to hear any feedback, pointers or ideas.
> Sorry if this is off-topic!
> Thanks

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