My freshman have started mastering the art of writing proofs. This is typically a difficult concept for students because they are used to making statements but stating the reason for each statement takes some getting used to. They were also having trouble understanding why they had to provide reasons for statements they felt where obvious. This is a common struggle for anyone writing proofs. Khan Academy has a great introductory video on geometry and Euclid's (Greek Mathematician.) For example, did you know that until recently that Euclid's Elements (13 volume Geometry Textbook) was the 2nd most produced book after the Bible? Isn't that crazy that a math textbook was second only to the Bible! The video also shows how Abraham Lincoln would read Euclid during his lawyer days when he needed to refresh on the importance of proving a point. This led to a comparison that if you where accused of murder do you want the lawyer that stands in the courtroom saying "Well, duh, this person is innocent" and then sits down or do you want the lawyer who proves to anyone in the room that you are notguilty by showing evidence, crossexamining witnesses and brings in experts to represent you? I would love to purchase Euclid's masterpiece soon and contribute to its success and the lasting legacy of Euclid.
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Natalie Turbiville
Educator who loves math and working with students. Archives
May 2016
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