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Topic: Graphing calculators

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Subject:   RE: Graphing calculators
Author: Damon
Date: Jul 30 2005
Good points, Craig.  It's sad...when I taught 7th grade math in inner-city
Brooklyn (NY) a few years ago, these calculators were not even an issue, as not
a single student I ever had owned one or had access to them through the school.
Where I work in Scottsdale (AZ) today, not a single student is without one (most
own them).  The whole experience has been a real eye-opener for me.

Here in Arizona, I am working with students who are preparing to take the
Advanced Placement Calculus BC examination at the end of the school year.  In
this enviornment, most of the students have the TI-89, as it is more geared
toward their advanced studies and they have access to them.  Teachers are
trained to work with students who use both the 84 and the 89.  I totally agree
that one must have a sort "independent drive" and a certain level of tech
savvyness to learn how to use the 89 well, and I am glad that you said
just didn't fit well into my comments :)

To the original poster...I agree with with his 8th grade teachers
(and *definitely* talk with teachers in what will be his high school) , and
discuss the options with your son.  That input should help you decide, and he'll
be fine either way.


On Jul 29 2005, Craig wrote:
> As a teacher of some students who show up with the TI-89 when others
> (including the teacher) have and use a TI-84, I must add a caution
> to Mr. Klein's comments.  I agree with all the positive statements
> about the TI-89, but, depending on your son's teachers, he may be on
> his own in learning how to use it.  Not a problem for a tech-savvy
> student with lots of drive, but it can be a problem for the student
> who figured "if 84 is good, 89 must be better, especially since it's
> more expensive."  In particular, data manipulation and matrix work
> on the TI-89 are less intuitive than on the TI-84, and the
> programming language is different.  Your best bet is to ask the
> teachers at your son's school, both those who know him and his
> capabilities, and those who teach higher-level courses, what they
> would recommend.  But by all means, if your son really "gets into"
> technology, the TI-89 will provide both challenge and greater
> capacity.

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