Friday, January 20, 2012

Some of our best posts from August 2006

Janine and I have been blogging about homeschooling for over six years now. If you missed some of our early posts, you have missed some of our best thoughts. Here are some highlights from August 2006:

Janine posted Reasons to Avoid Government Schools: Part 1, Part 2, Part 3 and Part 4.

We shared some links on John Stossel with Stupid in America.

In Respect and choices Janine addresses the question of do homeschoolers show disrespect towards public school families.

Richard Feynman on the textbook review process is both insightful and scary.

Janine wrote about our first day of 'school'.

Henry shared some ways to Promote Your Blog.

Janine wrote about a typical crazy day in What a Day!

Do you think there is any difference between Schools and Prisons?

I posted one of my favorite quotes:

"You say the little efforts that I make will do no good; that they never will prevail to tip the hovering scale where justice hangs in the balance. I don't think I ever thought they would. But I am prejudiced beyond debate in favor of my right to choose which side shall feel the stubborn ounces of my weight."

- Bonaro Overstreet

And I posted this great story on The importance of Mathematics:


From: (Tom Duff)

Taylor Series - a matter of life or death

Mathematics can even be a matter of life or death. During the Russian revolution, the mathematical physicist Igor Tamm was seized by anti-Communist vigilantes at a village near Odessa where he had gone to barter for food. They suspected he was an anti-Ukrainian communist agitator and dragged him off to their leader.

Asked what he did for a living he said that he was a mathematician. The skeptical gang-leader began to finger the bullets and grenades slung around his neck. "All right", he said, "calculate the error when the Taylor series approximation of a function is truncated after n terms. Do this and you will go free; fail and you will be shot". Tamm slowly calculated the answer in the dust with his quivering finger. When he had finished the bandit cast his eye over the answer and waved him on his way.

Tamm won the 1958 Nobel prize for Physics but he never did discover the identity of the unusual bandit leader. But he found a sure way to concentrate his students' minds on the practical importance of Mathematics!


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