Re: Ti-86 Math Programs
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Re: Ti-86 Math Programs
RWW Taylor writes:
>Is there a moral here? The TI-86 (and the TI-83 and all
>the other junior cousins) can do some great mathematics.
>However, you don't need (or normally even want) a
>_program_ to hold your hand -- the work is usually best
>done on the home screen, entering commands directly
>(or using built-in dialogues). Much like using a scratch
>pad for throw-away calculations. Everyone asks about programs
>to solve quadratic equations, for example. I teach my
>students that once they have the coefficients entered
>formally into the calculator memory in some form (as
>constants A, B and C, or as a list, or whatever) then
>directly asking about the discriminant and the roots
>with a few keystrokes (recalling the formula, of course)
>is really the right way to develop the numerical roots.
>Or use a graph or solver or whatever. But don't say
>"Who's got a program?", because then you are not taking
>control of the situation yourself but depending on
>some non-standard resource of chancy general availability.
<nxt@JUNO.COM> writes in reply:
>i think his point is.. he wants a program for like TRIG LAWS... law
>of cosines, sines.. a program with lots of built in equations.. like
>geometry stuff.. area.. etc..etc...
>
>heck i don't wanna do law of cosines.. and sines.. doing sins.. cos..
>then storing the number then typing another crap on the home screen
>etc.. .. instead i like punching a program, pick SAS (side angle side)
>then plugin the number and press enter and bam.. i get the answer nice
>and quick..
>
>and hehe.. i think you were THINKING TOO much for an answer.. (3
>PARAGRAPHS???)
>---
>-nXt
> nxt@geocities.com http://nxt.home.ml.org OR:
> nxt@juno.com http://www.geocities.com/SiliconValley/Way/6521
In the past, I have greatly respected RWW Taylor's well-reasoned
posts. In this case, I must partially disagree. Understanding the
_process_ of a long computation is obviously crucial, but _when_
the math (or chemistry/physics formulas, etc.) have been mastered,
repeated keystrokes take up time (that in, for example, timed
tests, cannot be wasted) and are very susceptible to operator error.
A program is the obvious solution -- especially considering the ease
with which TI calculators can be programmed. RWW Taylor makes
the valid point that students may be inclined to wantonly copy each
others' programs, which obviously defeats the purpose of learning and
_then_ using a program to simplify life. The best method may be
the one used in my class: If you can write the program yourself, you
may use it! Disclaimer: I am still a high school student; therefore, my
two cents may be biased. I would like to see futher discussion in
this thread (though maybe GRAPH-TI would be a better forum?).
Kevin J. DeGraaf
Class of 1999, Unity Christian High School
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