Month: September 2018

Week 5 Assignments

Week 5 Assignments

Exam #1 will take place on Tuesday, 10/2 (first half of class).

Written work – none
WeBWorK – Assignment #4, due Tuesday, October 2nd, at midnight. You are encouraged to start working on Assignment #5, which will be due one week later.
OpenLab – none


Exam #1 Review Sheet is posted

UPDATE: The exam will cover through Sec 2.9 only.  Problem #16 on the review sheet will NOT be on the exam (although it may appear on the second exam).

The first exam will take place on Tuesday, October 2nd.  The review sheet is posted under “Classroom Resources/Exam Reviews” – it is the same as last year’s Exam #1 Review.  Please let me know if you have any questions, or to report an error.

Prof. Reitz

Week 4 Assignments

Week 4 Assignments

Written work – none
WeBWorK – Assignment #3, due Tuesday, September 25th, at midnight.
OpenLab – none

STUDY – for your first exam, taking place on Tuesday, 10/2, during the first hour of class.  A review sheet will be posted at least 1 week prior to the exam.

P only if Q….

Hi everyone,

I’m writing to follow up on a discussion we had in class today, regarding methods for translating conditional (“if…then”) statements from English to symbols.

We started with:

If it rained, the ground got wet.

Which we symbolized as

R -> W

Where R = “it rained” and W = “the ground got wet”.

We then got stuck on the phrase:

It rained only if the ground got wet.

The correct symbolic version of this is:

R -> W

just as it appeared in the slides, where R = “it rained” and W = “the ground got wet”, just as before.  This is counterintuitive, but true!

For a longer discussion, with some better examples, take a look at this page (otherwise, just memorize it!): 


OpenLab #3: “Sentences”

Due Thursday, 9/20/18.  For this week’s writing assignment, take a look at the picture below called “Sentences.”  Read every sentence in the picture.  As you read, pay attention to your own stream of consciousness – what are the thoughts that pop into your head?  For full credit, respond to all 4 of the following items.

  1. Record two observations about the sentences in the picture – what do you notice / what’s something you find interesting / what popped into your head / what stood out.
  2. Choose one of the sentences in the picture (do NOT choose the same sentence as anyone else).  Type the sentence out “in quotes”, and then answer the following questions:
    a. Is it a statement (as discussed in class on Tuesday)?  Explain why or why not.
    b. Is it true or false? Explain in everyday English why or why not.
  3. Make up a sentence that you believe would fit into this picture.  Tell us the sentence, and then tell us whether it is a statement, and whether it is true or false.
  4. What connection (if any) does this assignment have to do with the work we are doing in class?

“Sentences” by Flickr user Eldeem

Week 3 Assignments

Week 3 Assignments

Written work – None
WeBWorK – Start on WeBWorK 3, (it will not be due until Tuesday, 9/25 at midnight).
OpenLab – OpenLab #3, due Tuesday, 9/20 (at start of class).

NOTE: Next week Tuesday 9/18 there are no classes.

OpenLab #2: Mathography

This assignment is due Thursday, September 13, at the start of class.

Assignment.  Choose ONE of the following two topics.  Write a reply to this post, responding to the topic.  Begin by telling us which topic you chose. (1-2 paragraphs).


  1. Sometimes people can recognize a time when their opinion of math dramatically changed either for the better or the worse. If such a time happened to you, tell us about it.
  2. Choose an experience you had in which you suddenly understood a math concept (it could be any kind of math, from elementary school up through college).  Describe what happened.  Do you think you could explain it to others in a way that they could have the same flash of understanding?

Extra Credit.  For extra credit, write a response to one of your classmates’ comments.  Do you feel the same, or different?  Did you learn anything?  Did you get any ideas about teaching, or about learning?

Why are we doing this, anyway?  We are following two ideas that have come up already in class — things that may not seem related to learning math, but research shows that engaging in these activities can dramatically increase the amount that you learn, and change the way you learn it.  The first is writing – something not typically associated with mathematics.  When you express your ideas in words, it forces you to think them through very carefully, detail by detail.  A great way to check and see if you really understand something is to try to explain it to someone else, either out loud or in writing.  Example: if you know how to add fractions, try teaching it someone who doesn’t know how.  The second is called metacognition, or “thinking about thinking.”  This happens when you think about what was going on in your head while you were working on a problem or trying to learn a new idea.  What train of thought did you follow?  Where did you get stuck, and what did you do next?  What were you feeling at the time? and so on.  Combining writing and metacognition can be a tremendously powerful tool in identifying the ways we learn best and the ways we make mistakes, and learning to improve.  However, like any skill, it takes practice.  That’s why we’re getting started by writing a little about our past experiences with mathematics.

Week 2 Assignments

Week 2 Assignments

Because we do not have class on Tuesday, September 11th, all assignments will be due on Thursday, September 13th, this week.

Written work – Sec 1.8 p.28: 3, 5, 6, 8, Due Thursday, September 13th, at the start of class.
NOTE: On this assignment, odd problems are worth 3 points, even problems worth 5 points.
WeBWorK – Assignment #2, dueThursday, September 13th, at midnight.
OpenLab – OpenLab #2, dueThursday, September 13th, at the start of class.