If you want a little something to do then try the Math Forum Year Game. How many numbers from 1 to 100 can you generate using the digits of 2016? Unlike Countdown which uses only the four operations and brackets, additional operations are allowed – see the detailed rules.
And did you know 2016 is an evil number!
Perhaps a good time to remind you of some resolutions I suggested for the New Academic Year:
Firstly – remember the
10 11 Commandments…
To elaborate a little more on some of these:
5 – looking it up – there are several excellent resources online for you to look up definitions or find extra examples. Never rely on just one source if you are finding a topic tricky, it can be helpful to see explanations written by different authors.
6 – To learn Mathematics you need to do Mathematics. You can never do enough examples! There are plenty of questions here (with answers included). Have you looked at the problems on Brilliant? New problems are published regularly and are suitable for younger school students all the way through to university students.
10 – on writing the language of mathematics correctly – see this clear guide to writing Mathematics from Dr Kevin P Lee and from John Kerl some excellent tips for mathematical handwriting, many of these tips these apply to students of all ages – do you distinguish carefully between a 1 and a 7 for example? Perhaps it is hard to tell whether you have written a 2 or a z or perhaps your 5s look a bit like a letter s?
Have a look at Peter Alfeld’s guide to Understanding Mathematics which he wrote for his students at Utah University.
Are you familiar with all the excellent (free) resources online to help your studies? Have you tried the brilliant Desmos graphing calculator for example, or used WolframAlpha to check your work? Do you have the GeoGebra app on your phone?
GeoGebra announced the release of their GeoGebra Graphing Calculator earlier this month; currently available for Android, the app will also be available for iPhone and Windows – watch for announcements.
Having downloaded the app to my phone I can confirm it works really well and i was easily able to follow the instructions given in the links here.
I very quickly created the diagram in the screenshot from my phone below. Using a finger one can drag point D around and note the angle at the circumference. With an account you can also save your files which are standard GeoGebra files.
Some more thoughts for you.
- Are you guilty of making any of the classic mistakes?
- How are your problem solving skills? There is plenty of good advice available – see this publication from Arizona State University for example
- If you are studying at university then have a look at Kevin Houston’s ‘How not to get a good mathematics degree‘ and ‘How to get a good mathematics degree‘. He also has provided a pdf file you can download: 10 Ways to Think Like a Mathematician. Kevin Houston works at the University of Leeds in the UK.
If you are trying to get organised generally then some of the resources on this page might be useful. I recommend Evernote highly (it’s free).
Wishing you all a very happy and productive new year!