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Topic: Formulas

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Subject:   RE: Formulas
Author: Mathman
Date: Feb 24 2005
On Feb 24 2005, Mrs J wrote:
> I have noticed over the last few years that students are having more
> difficulty with the concept of formulas. It could be something as
> simple as I=prt area, perimeter, volume, temperature converion, or
> any instance where the process is to enter numbers and compute the
> answer from that info. Am I alone or have others seen this problem?
One opinion:
It is a constant problem, being an aquired skill through observation of the
fundamental principles.  It is comounded by differing pedagogies, the one sayind
"Do the same to both sides", and the other being "transposition", which although
based firmly on the former, eliminates the drudgery.  The only solution I can
think of is lots of practice re-arranging, with a good section of time in the
slow, steady development of ideas.  I don't think there is enough time to do
that now in the classroom.  Perhaps the best you can do is to stress the
inportantce, apologise for lack of time, and suggest that anyone who does the
practice at home will get help on their work either at lunch hour or
before/after hours.  You'd have to be quite dedicated with other problems in
education being sometimes insurmountable.


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