As I really started to unwind on my first day speech I asked the freshmen to take out their programs and check and make certain they were in Algebra Section I (with the strange code ME21H-01) and one then another, then three more hands went up, and it should have been a sea, since I was speaking to a roomful of geometry students.

So I smiled and told them these stories, and the one about my first parent teacher conference day at my new school when a girl with the unfortunate habit of sticking up her hand to ask questions right in the middle (of what? didn’t matter, she found the middle) in my first period class stuck up her hand (right in the middle) and I let out an exasperated “What?” and she told me my shoes didn’t match, which was true, though they both were black, and that was really enough stories since I was almost out of breath and barely paused and didn’t stop until I reached a period.

Phew.

September 5, 2007 pm30 5:23 pm 5:23 pm

I sort of like that — it sounds like a clever way of making sure your students are paying attention :)

2. September 7, 2007 am30 3:51 am 3:51 am

HAHA well done, well done …

3. September 7, 2007 am30 4:15 am 4:15 am

Thanks, Jose.

And thank you, JBL, for believing I did that on purpose. But, no. I get lots and lots and lots of things right in class. It is a good thing that I make mistakes, and I do not hide them.

Just today (not mistakes, but…) I was introducing problem solving, I discussed a Mathematics Magazine problem that I revised my approach on several times, but never solved.

4. September 16, 2007 am30 5:12 am 5:12 am

a Mathematics Magazine problem

So… what was it?

And – I also thought you did it on purpose. :)

5. September 16, 2007 am30 5:30 am 5:30 am

The problem was this: consider a square frame, n x n, of thickness 2. Let’s tile the frame with 1 x 2 rectangles (ie, blank dominoes). How many tilings are there?

When I consider one edge of the frame, the solution is Fibonacci. But I did not have a good grasp on what happens at the corners.

And no, I don’t generally make mistakes on purpose. I like getting things right. But when I am wrong, I am wrong, and I don’t mind discussing it or pointing it out. I never (never) claim to have just been testing kids. That would be insulting.

Jose, how was poetry?

6. September 19, 2007 am30 4:04 am 4:04 am

Sorry for not getting back to you sooner, but please feel free to e-mail me when you got questions like that. I left a good response on my site, but basically, it was dope. I’m excited about the future as far as that is concerned. Thanks for askin’ …