Soc Help, and Study Help

Originally, these were set up as automated, e-mail forums, but they are now simply done by direct e-mail to Garlikov@hiwaay.net I am a philosopher interested in education. Much of my writing is accessible at www.Garlikov.com/writings.htm Some of that explains the purpose and motivation for offering this free service.

This is **NOT** a place where I will give you
the (simple
or short) answers to your homework or to do your homework for you; it
is
a place where I will try to help you understand the material so that
you
can do your homework well yourself. In order to
do
that, you need to let me know as specifically as possible what it is
you
do not understand, what you have tried so far, and where or why you
think
you are stuck. (We could entertain higher level math and science when
this
was a forum, but now that I am doing it myself, I cannot answer many
calculus
questions nor advanced chemistry questions. There are some services
available
on the web for those, though many of them are set up just to give you
the
answer, not necessarily a full explanation.)

It is my philosophy that **UNDERSTANDING**
material
is the key to being able to best apply it, and though understanding
requires
one's own thinking, specific explanations from someone else can often
help
thinking be more productive. There are some web pages already
set up for assistance with some common math difficulties, from
teaching
math to young children to aspects of algebra II.

Students having trouble understanding the concept of mols in chemistry can read about that at www.garlikov.com/chemistry/mols.html and those having difficulty understanding stoichiometry may be helped by the explanation at www.garlikov.com/chemistry/mols2.html

There is also a page for students having difficulty understanding Physics explanations in general, www.garlikov.com/science/sciteach.htm

A way of looking at literature (using the Theban plays of Sophocles as an example) can be found at www.akat.com/Oedipus.html

Understanding "reasoning" in general and how to write "reasonably" is explained at www.akat.com/reasoning.htm

*B*ecause
initial responses may require further questioning by you, with
follow-up
responses, it will generally not be helpful to use this service just
the
night before an important test or ten minutes before your homework is
due.
Understanding takes time and effort even when you have help.
wishes.

**WARNINGS:
As in everyday life, there is no way to guarantee the accuracy of
responses
you will receive here. It is therefore important that you think about,
and try to test, the explanations you receive, to see whether they seem
to work and seem to make good sense. The entire point of these forums
is
to help promote the idea to students that logical and conceptual
material
is supposed to make sense and that students are therefore to try to
make
sense of it for themselves, no matter how much "help" or lecturing they
may receive.**

**AND, AS IN ALL INTERNET COMMUNICATIONS, IT IS
DANGEROUS
TO GIVE OUT YOUR PHONE NUMBER OR ADDRESS TO ANYONE WHO ASKS FOR IT OR
TO
CALL OR ARRANGE TO MEET SOMEONE. YOU SHOULD TELL A PARENT OR OTHER
ADULT
IF ANYONE ASKS FOR ANY OF THESE THINGS.**

Math in particular, because its material is cumulative in nature, is important to understand from the beginning, yet many students who can DO elementary arithmetic well enough to get good grades in elementary school do not have a sufficient foundation to be able to do well in higher level math. Although the Math-Help forum addresses many higher level mathematics problems, it is very important that younger students (and their parents on their behalf) also ask questions about anything that seems even mildly difficult or that does not seem to make sense to them. There may be more involved than is readily apparent, even to an adult who can "do" arithmetic. Although math practice should be sufficient for students to be able to do many computations 'automatically', it is important that students at some point also understand how and why certain conventions and procedures work. For an example of the kind of complexity involved in understanding what seems to be even a fairly simple arithmetic concept that most adults just take for granted --"place-value" (that is, columns to represent "ones", "tens", "hundreds", decimal places, etc.) -- see the long essay, The Concept and Teaching of Place-Value. That essay includes a method for helping children easily and readily understand and use "place-value", a method based on understanding the concept and all that it involves.

If you are looking for ideas on teaching math to young children.

If you are beginning algebra and feel lost already, you might find help in: (A supplemental introduction to algebra.) and in "The Way Algebra Works".

If you are having trouble with "rate" problems (such as
rate-time-distance
problems), the web page

(Pre-algebra and
algebra "rate" problems and principles) may be helpful.

And if you want to see a complexity that confuses children about
what
fractions even **are** -- that most adults don't realize exists--
look
at "More About
Fractions
Than Anyone Needs To Know".

Reset June 21, 2000