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 Post subject: Maths - American style
PostPosted: Sat Jan 09, 2010 11:32 am 
I would have posted this in the maths section but as it is not related to 11+ questions I thought I may get more of a response here.

Does anyone know if Maths in the US is taught differently to the UK? I found a fantastic site that I have paid a subscription too and I have noticed they use slightly different names:

slope insteadof gradient
parenthesis when we would say brackets
using a "." instead of "x" for multiplication
using the phrase "standard form" when converting y=mx+c into Ax+By=C

These are not major things but as DS progresses I wonder if he will be taught something that could confuse him due to differing terminology. :?


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Jan 09, 2010 11:39 am 
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Joined: Thu Mar 05, 2009 9:43 am
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If they use a "." instead of "x" for multiplication, what do they use for a decimal point, or do they use a comma, as in some (all?) Euro countries?


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Jan 09, 2010 11:41 am 
Still use a "." for decimals - thankfully!


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Jan 09, 2010 12:35 pm 
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Joined: Fri Sep 15, 2006 8:51 am
Posts: 8119
I have seen "standard form" used in the UK ?? in some GCSE papers,

Also parenthesis is used fairly widely in scientific journals / american papers - won't hurt for them to hear a different word for brackets
(not that I am encouraging the use of american english any more widely than we have to, just been pragmatic)


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Jan 09, 2010 12:56 pm 
I know they use standard form in the sense 2.6 x 10 -6 (imagine -6 is a power) but never called that in linear graphs but then I was taught the Scottish way! :? :lol:


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Jan 09, 2010 1:12 pm 
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Joined: Wed May 09, 2007 2:09 pm
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Location: Solihull, West Midlands
They call it MATH!!


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Jan 09, 2010 1:35 pm 
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Joined: Fri Sep 15, 2006 8:51 am
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solimum wrote:
They call it MATH!!


Yes - I really do not like that..... probably nothing actually wrong with it just :twisted: :twisted:


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Jan 09, 2010 3:26 pm 
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Joined: Mon Nov 24, 2008 1:25 pm
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"math" is just ghastly. End of.


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PostPosted: Sat Jan 09, 2010 7:08 pm 
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From limited experience at primary level they take a more 'old fashioned' approach in terms of calculations rather than problem solving so could be good for teaching method but need to make sure DS understands what he is doing.
If he does understand the underlying ideas then the terminolgy didn't ought to be an issue as he can apply what he learns.
Would make it clear to him that what he is taught in school over-rides the American system though, so he should use the same vocabulary as his teacher!


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PostPosted: Sat Jan 09, 2010 8:53 pm 
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Joined: Tue Oct 20, 2009 4:04 pm
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I was telling a friend who lives in US that my DD had some mental maths homework for which she could not use a calculator. She was very surprised and said that she couldn't imagine American children doing any calculations without a calculator!!


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