## Tuesday, January 13, 2009

### Descartes mania

My grade 7 students are starting to explore with coordinates, finding the distance between two points or the coordinates of the midpoint of a line segment for example. I made a point of introducing them to my French hero of the month, Mr Rene Descartes. None of them had ever heard his name before and I think they enjoyed the ride over to the 17th century. They love to see what all these mathematicians we refer to looked like in those days. I could hardly retain my hilarity hearing their comments.

'He looks so bored, writing books all day long!'

'But, but, but...he's old! And he has long hair!'

'Oooh, so that's Mr Rene. I wish he hadn't spent so much time thinking and writing. Then we wouldn't have to learn about coordinates!'

On a more serious note, we are soon going to move on to:
* Linear equations: introduction to algebra (grade 7)
* Linear equations II: y=mx+p and all you can derive from that ;) (grade 8)
* Angle properties of circles (grade 9)

If you have any experiences to share about these topics, feel free to comment. I am quite keen on improving my lessons.

Mathematically yours,

*M*