It is sad.

I gave a retake today for the first quiz. We took the quiz last Tuesday and discussed it on Wednesday. That gives them 5 days to study and ask questions. Well, most of them did better. Only 5 (out of 27ish) scored worse, almost all jumped at least one letter grade. But I had one guy...

The problem was a chart. It had 3 columns: "Fraction," "Decimal," and "Power of Ten." The fraction might be 1/10. The decimal would then be 0.1 and the power of ten would be 10^-1. So during the retake today.

He: "I don't get this."
Me: "What?"
He: "The power of 10."
Me: "Well, you need to fill in the chart so that it is equivalent."

I walk away and let him think (burn, burn).
He: "Mrs. Dick, *points to "Power of Ten" column* did you teach us this?"

I almost cried.
Me: "Yes. We did it in class."

That was all I could say to not get mad/sad/etc.

I mean really, the retake! Not class, or even the first quiz, the freakin' RE-TAKE! Stinkin' football players. Grr...


Crunch said...

A teacher is infinitely patient. I didn't have the patience, that's why I didn't go into teaching. I taught a class in college and I made someone cry.

I asked a girl to come up and work out some equation on the board. She was writing something that was wrong, and I said. "What is that? That's a mess." She started crying. Thus ended my teaching career. I just didn't have the patience.

I give you lots of credit... all the credit in the world.

Just remember, a teacher is infinitely patient.

Mike said...

I don't really have a comment about this entry (although as a former Math Major I did cringe when I read it).

I just ran across a site that had this script:


and I thought you might be intereseted. I know it would have helped me in high school. Alas, we had to solve quadratice equations by hand...

The Math Ninja said...

Well thanks, that is a neat link. The amount of on-line resources for students now is great. I only wish I had more computers to use in the classroom! (We have 2 mobile labs of 30 computers for about 800 students!)