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September 18th, 2018, 06:01 PM   #11
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Sorry. I'll avoid chiming in in the future.
feel free, people here are just grumpy
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September 18th, 2018, 06:38 PM   #12
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Thank you, everyone, I appreciate the help.

And RichardJ, I do appreciate your plain English approach, too. It helped me to think the problem through a little more intuitively so that I can explain it better later.

Cheers, everyone!
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September 18th, 2018, 06:58 PM   #13
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Sorry. I'll avoid chiming in in the future.
No, I am sorry that my words caused offense. It was unintentional. I was merely trying to say that, for many students, the plain English, common sense approach is necessary for them to make any progress at all; only then can they take the next necessary step to embrace the more formal approach.

Talk all you want.
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September 18th, 2018, 07:19 PM   #14
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If there are 3 white balls and a 1 in 4 of chance of drawing one, then there has to be 4 x 3 or 12 balls in total.
Unless the 3 white balls were very small, thus a low
chance of being grabbed and pulled out...
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September 19th, 2018, 05:00 AM   #15
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Originally Posted by JeffM1 View Post
No, I am sorry that my words caused offense. It was unintentional. I was merely trying to say that, for many students, the plain English, common sense approach is necessary for them to make any progress at all; only then can they take the next necessary step to embrace the more formal approach.

Talk all you want.
JeffM1, thank you, but I wasn't offended at all. A bit of explanation. My mother was a high school math teacher (small town school) and she could teach math to anyone - by figuring out what it was they were struggling with and then finding a way to get past those barriers, which did involve a lot of 'plain english' explanations; I sort of adopted my approach from hers.

I think I could fairly say that I was a talented math student as a young man (a very long time ago), but I can a couple of times recall being in a place where my approach wasn't exactly welcomed - first at a summer 'math camp' at Utah State and again at a gathering of the finalists in the Michigan math competition at a college downstate. I really just didn't fit in with the group.

So I thought that maybe I had just 'walked into that room' again and that this just wasn't the place for that.

I will stick to the high school forum and only add my 2 cents if it seems appropriate or helpful to the questioner.
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