Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Five Things I Learned at PCMI: Monday 6/29/15

For the next few weeks, I will be posting five things I've learned each day. Some will be math related, others education related. Some will probably be random thoughts that make no sense. Anyway, here we go:

1. Poolside lectures in the are the best type of lectures. I skipped the first cross-program lecture to make a visit to the resort pool. Fortunately, there was a professor who also had the same idea. Today’s topic: parameter and moduli spaces.

2. Stoves are more useful than jacuzzi tubs. Due to a shortage of rooms, my roommate and I are not in a Villa, and therefore do not have a kitchen to cook in. However, we have been given the Enzian “Honeymoon” Penthouse Suite, complete with an oversized shower, fireplace, king sized bed, and three person jacuzzi tub (no less than three feet from the bed, might I add). We’re hoping to barter use of the tub for some pots and pans.

3. There is a marked difference between the volleyball skills of New York teachers and Los Angeles teachers. I wonder why...

4. Based purely on anecdotal evidence, teachers in New York Public Schools seem to feel that they are restricted from moving standards from one course to another (e.g. moving quadratic functions to Algebra II) because of the NY Regents Exams.

5. Many of the proofs, properties, and theorems that we wrestle with in geometry can be much more intuitively explained and understood with transformations. More on that later.

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