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


  1. Jaroslav E Sykora

    OPEN LAB #3: open sentences

    #I. What popped out in my head?
    1. A DADA poem. A Tristan Tzara’s random composition of words. An article from the AMS’ magazine cut into pieces by scissors and put on the desk in a random way, avoiding any logic and reason.
    2. A closer reading revealed the sentences were either open statements or statements. Most of them begin with the intro phrase: “This is…” which rejects my first observation as being true.

    #II. Chose a sentence.
    1. “This sentence has only one spellng error.” It is a statement because it can be either true or false.
    2. The standard form of the word “spelling” requires an “i” as a part of the suffix “ing” of the gerund “spell-ing”. That’s why our statement is TRUE as stating that there is only one spelling error in the word “spellng”. However, if the word “spellng” is a record of the phonetic image of the word “spelling”, as it was pronounced by, for example, a Vietnamese waitress (as I heard it pronounced some years back in a Vietnamese restaurant in downtown of Brooklyn), the statement is FALSE because no spelling error was made.

    #III. Make a statement.
    “Pierre de Fermat proofed that a3 +b3≠c3.” Unfortunately Fermat left a brief and scatchy comment on the margin of the book, Arithmetica by Diophantus, saying he did proof the theorem which some mathematicians believed to be true, although many did not. Even after Andrew Wiles proofed it in 1993 [his proof has hundreds of pages], saying that Fermat had no chance to proof the theorem in his time, some still believe Fermat did proof it even though he did not provide any evidence of his proof.

    #IV. Connections?
    1. We identify statements and the relation between them. And there are some in this assignment.
    2. The apparent chaos of letters, words, and sentences reveal order, sense, and reason after a close reading. In general, it is like with mathematics. A random junk of digits and symbols bear a meaningful message.
    3. To keep the students entertained. 

    • Jonas Reitz

      I really like your #2, II example – it’s a good illustration that we use words flexibly in all kinds of ways, including things like phonetics. Also, if you are simply quoting someone who spelled something wrong, then the error is likely theirs, and not yours! Subtle…

  2. Samantha.C

    b. “This sentence does not exist until it is read.” -> This sentence stood out to me because once I read the sentence it really existed in my thoughts. If I didn’t read it at all the sentence wouldn’t be relevant to me.
    b. “This hamburger is delusional.”-> This second sentence stood out to me because, for one it made me laugh because once I read it; all i could thing about was a burger from shake shack. Reading the word hamburger, I am making a delusion of the hamburger, it makes the hamburger unrealistic.

    a. “This sentence, though a terrible liar, is also typed in a nice red font.” -> This is a statement, because the sentence states that it is typed in red font, but actually its not in red font. The sentence is typed in blue font.
    b. The statement is false, because the sentence is not typed in red font, it is typed in blue font.

    a. This sentence is not a complete sentence without a period at the end.
    b. This is a statement because it can be answered with a true or false answer.
    c. The statement is true, a period ends a sentence which means it ends a complete idea.

    4. The connection this assignment have with the work we are doing in class is that we are analyzing statements to see whether if they are true or false. With mathematics we generally work with different problems to see if functions are true or false.

  3. Junior

    1- “This sentence only has one spellng error”.
    a.This sentence really stood out because it took me forever to find the error. I was at the point where I had to read letter by letter to mind the missing n in spelling.
    b.The stuff that reeled me in were the blue fonts and some capitalized letters. Other things I notice was that some sentences were alike yet each had something unique.

    2-“THiS SeNTeNCe HaS No CaPiTaLiZed VoWeLS”.
    a.This sentence is a statement because I can answer True or false to it.
    b.The statement is true because I see no capitalized vowels in it.

    3-This sentence makes you think of pandas.
    a. This is a statement because I can give a true or false answer to it. The statement may be true or false depending on who you ask but for me its a true statement it really did make me think of pandas!

    a. This assignment has a lot to do with what we are doing in class. For me it had me trying to figure out what sentences were statements. It was a nice and fun challenge. I think I have the concept down.

  4. Jessie

    1. When I began, the first two sentences I read (“This sentence Fragment” and “This sentence is almost illegibly small “) initially made me assume all the sentences following will somehow be defined with in the way they are written. As I moved on to the third sentence “ This sentence wants a hug” I realized my assumption was wrong which led me to pay more attention to what I was reading so I can conclude if the sentences were true or false. What stood out to me is when I reached “This sentence contains exactly fifty-two characters.” I went back and counted each letter and punctuation mark and resulted in 47 characters so I thought that I finally found a sentence that Is actually lying. However I couldnt get pass the sentence so then I began to wonder if the sentence was referring to containing exactly “fifty-two characters”. Then I went back and counted the spaces within the sentence and it resulted in 52 characters!!!

    2-“This sentence does not exist until it is read”
    -This sentence is a statement because it can be either true or false.
    – The sentence is False because whether I read the statement or not it would have still existed. The definition of exist is to have objective reality or being. Anything that can be acknowledged in the present, exists. Although the sentence may have never existed to me personally until I read it, the moment it was written or even said it existed.

    3. This sentence is not a statement.
    -This is a statement and is false.

    4. This assignment connects to the work we are doing in class because understanding what logic means in sentences will help us to understand logic in math. The fundamentals of forming sentences is something we use everyday but learning how to use statement to make logical conclusions is a lesson that would assist with making logical conclusions in math.

  5. Silvana

    1. Observation
    a. Almost all the sentences began with “this sentence”, so the one that was different and stood out to me was “This hamburger is delusional.”
    b. I noticed a sentence is in French “ce n’est pas une phrase”, as well as other sentences being upside down, making me turn my head in different directions,
    2. Sentence
    a. “This sentence contains exactly fifty-two characters.”; we do not know if it is true of false until we count, therefore it is a statement.
    b. This sentence is false because it contains less than 52 characters.
    3. Statement
    a. This sentence has a total of eight words.
    b. This is a statement because it is either true or false.
    c. This statement is true because it does have eight words.
    4. Connections
    After reading the sentences, we have to analyze if they are true or false. We used true and false statements to help us fill out the truth tables.

  6. jesstopal

    1. “This sentence laughs at those who turn their heads upside-down to read it.” I found this sentence interesting because the sentence was written in reverse. When I see “upside down,” the idea of a mystery popped into my head; I thought about transferring our life from one world to another.

    2. “This sentence laughs at those who turn their heads upside-down to read it.”
    Yes, this sentence is a statement because all statements can be true or false.
    This sentence is false because when those who turn their heads try to read this sentence, it won’t laugh at them. You don’t need to turn your head to read it; you can read this sentence without doing so.

    3. “This sentence starts with an uppercase letter.”
    This sentence is a statement, and this statement is true because the sentence started with an uppercase letter.

    4. This assignment helps us to think more deeply about what we learned in the last lecture and gives us a chance to review. Also, this assignment opens another window for us to think differently. It helps us to make a connection with what we learn in class and expand our knowledge and thinking.

  7. Aleks

    1. The sentences are written in various ways. The sentences are also written in a unique formatting.
    2. “The sentence is stretched” a) statement because it is talking about something but not saying to do something. b) it’s true because through observation it can be seen to be true.
    3. “All these sentences are contained within a square”. It is a statement because it is making a claim. It is true because this statement can be observed to be true.
    4. In class we were talking about statements and how to tell them apart from non statements. This was practice to notice statements and if they are true.

  8. Rachel

    1. All but one of the sentences are written in English. The sentences do not necessarily follow the grammatical rules of English, for example the sentence with a bunch of capitalized letters throughout and the sentences that misspell words.
    2. “This sentence have unproper grammers.”
    a. This sentence is a statement because it can be either true or false; the sentence either has improper grammar (true)or it does not (false).
    b. This statement is true because the sentence does not have proper grammar. “Have” should be “has,” “unproper” should be “improper,” and “grammers” should be singular and spelled “grammar.”
    3. “This sentence contains fifteen words.” This sentence is a statement, as it can be either true or false, it can contain either fifteen words (true) or any other number of words (false). This statement is false because the sentence actually contains five words, not fifteen.
    4. This assignment is connected to the work we are doing in class in that we are discerning what statements truly are. While the statements are not necessarily mathematical here, we are able to determine which sentences can be either true or false, something that will help us later on when trying to determine whether a logic statement is indeed a statement. This assignment helps us to get a basic understanding of the underlying concept before it gets confusing with all the symbols and mathematical language used.

  9. Danping Zhong

    1. I notice that the picture is made by using different sentences with different sizes and fonts. It’s interesting that many of these sentences are statement and made by using personification. We can identify if the sentence is telling the truth or not by reading it.
    a. It’s a statement. Because I can tell that it’s true or not by looking at the sentence.
    b. It’s true. Because the correct grammar should be “HAS” instead of “HAVE” in the sentence.
    3. This sentence is invisible.
    It’s a statement, and it’s false.
    4. In the class, we learned the definition of statements. This assignment deepens our understanding of what is statement in an interesting way.

  10. Franklin Ajisogun

    1. Record two observations about the sentences in the picture
    • Some sentences are much smaller than others
    • Some sentences were funny

    2. The sentence I chose was the “THIS SENTENCE NO VERB”
    a. Is it a statement (as discussed in class on Tuesday)? Explain why or why not.
    • Yes, it is statement. The statement is saying that there is no verb in the statement and there is no verb in it.
    b. Is it true or false? Explain in everyday English why or why not.
    • Yes, it is true because there is there is no verb in the statement.

    3. Make up a sentence that you believe would fit into this picture.
    • This sentence has a verb
    • This is a true statement because the statement has a verb in the statement: “has”

    4. This assignment helps me to understand what makes a statement to be true or false and helps us to understand truth tables.

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