Math Magnifications®

 
 
We offer focused, miniature classes—what we will call "Math Magnifications."® These will consist of interactive learning with small (six maximum) groups of students of subjects that either
  1. are often missed in traditional math curricula; or
  2. deserve special attention or an informal motivational introduction because they are both pivotal and deep; or
  3. might be of interest; or
  4. will give students a better picture of the breadth of math.
We will choose subjects sufficiently important to warrant some repetition for students who have seen it in some form already. Since math builds on itself, solidifying your knowledge of a subject always greatly improves and simplifies future learning.
These classes will be more traditionally pedantic than our workshops in the sense of having particular skills that students will learn and demonstrate, on paper and on a chalkboard during the class, and in homework that we'll assign for outside the classtime.
The cost of the class includes e-mail discussions with students about the homework assigned and corrections of their homework. The goal will be for them to eventually do all the problems correctly.
Each class will have a maximum of 6 participants, and will last approximately one and one-half hours.
Here are some specific topics that we are considering offering or have offered. The number of classes spent on each topic will vary depending on the intellectual mass of the topic; many will require only one class, some might require more.
  1. Fractions
  2. Consumer math
  3. Compound interest
  4. Number bases
  5. Descriptive statistics
  6. Use of variables
  7. Probability: Venn diagrams and other organizations of events
  8. Probability and counting
  9. Probability: when to add and when to multiply
  10. Statistical inference (confidence intervals and hypothesis testing)
  11. Infinite sequences and sums
  12. Vectors
  13. Matrices
  14. Complex numbers
  15. Rigid motions and symmetry
  16. Population growth
  17. Fractals
  18. Conditional probability
  19. Asymptotics (long-term behavior and equilibrium)
  20. Different infinities
  21. Rate, including unit multipliers, distance, slope, ratios, and a type of problem very popular on ACT and SAT exams
  22. Frequency, wavelength, and amplitude
  23. Quick introduction to calculus: by focusing on a parabola, we will make both the big deals in calculus—differentiation and integration (rate of change, slope, and area) less mysterious
We welcome statements of preferences from the list above and requests for other topics.
 
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