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Worth a Letter Grade


 

I taught math for 10 years.  During that whole time, the biggest causes of lost points on tests or homework were clerical errors, careless mistakes and not checking work. So I came up with some "wisdom" that I would offer up on Day 1 and keep repeating until the last day of school. I tried to keep it light and a bit tongue-in-cheek, but the message is serious stuff. Following these simple principles can boost a student's marks by one letter grade or more.


Some Math Wisdom From Mister L

  • "A calculator is a small computer and inside, computers are stupid. They only do what you tell them."
  • "Don't punch a problem into a calculator without some idea of what the answer is going to be and make sure you check the one it gives you." 
  • "If you copy the problem wrong, the answer will always be..... wrong." 
  • "If you punch in the numbers wrong, the answer will always be..... wrong." 
  • "There's often more than one way to do a math problem. The more complex the problem, the more ways there are to do it."
  • "Math requires a degree of precision and accuracy that most people aren't used to."
  • "Accuracy is more important than speed. Accuracy develops confidence and confidence develops speed." 
  • "When the students are done with my math class, they'll all want to be math teachers instead of highly paid rocket scientists."