So, did you ever use that algebra that they made you take?

United States
July 31, 2007 9:27am CST
I can remember in high school (and college) HATING algebra. The teachers always said, "you'll need this one day." My question for you is, have you used the algebra in your daily life? If so how? If not, do you feel it needs to be taught in school?
5 people like this
19 responses
@dmillman (2273)
• United States
31 Jul 07
I never used it, and I knew that when thet were teaching it that I'd never use it. If you don't use it, you lose it, so what's the point of teaching it to people. If they end up in a career where something like algebra is needed, then people should have to learn it. Otherwise, I think it's a waste. They need to focus more on the every-day math. When I used to be a cahier in high school, customers would always comment that if it weren't for the computers (meaning the cash registers) not many of you kids would be able to work here because you don't know basic math. It'strue for me, so I never argued. I stink at math - always have and probably always will. A lot of the stuff they taught in school I thought were basically useless. They could save the schools a lot of money by not teaching the useless crap, and keep the arts and music, and add more physical education to get the kids moving around more. They should teach stretching and exercise. I don't remember larning anything about that. I mean, wouldn't that be more important for me to learn than doedgeball?
2 people like this
• United States
31 Jul 07
I so agree that we need to focus more on basic math. I have two kids who are honor students. Both have aced every math class that is available at their high school and both have taken math classes at a local college so that they will enter college with some hours behind them. However, when it comes to just being quick with numbers or God forbid, having to do some math in their head..they freak! Students can't manipulate numbers anymore!! Very few of my college students can figure 30% of a number without some help!!!!
1 person likes this
• Philippines
31 Jul 07
i have never hated math, i love math, in our everyday life we use math, like in budgeting or when im doing my groceries, i always calculate which item i can have for a lesser price by doing ratio and proportion. we use math in our daily life, we just dont realize it.
2 people like this
• United States
31 Jul 07
Yeah. I loved math too. Until I took up Calculus. OMG...headache. lol. Oh, I forgot that I use it at the grocery store. I always add up my things to see how much my total should be at checkout. :) I guess I use it more than I though really.
• United States
31 Jul 07
As a nurse yes, I use it every day. Or at least every day that I work. I only work two days a week, but it I use it for figuring medication doses for my children at home as well. I love math
• United States
31 Jul 07
We teach our nursing students Dimensional Analysis. It is just a series of conversions. Other than ratio/proportion, I used very little of my algebra for med calculation. Now that we are using the dimensional analysis, I use none of the algebra!
• Switzerland
31 Jul 07
Yeah, surprisingly. I was calculating the interests the money in my bank account will gain over x months, etc.
2 people like this
• United States
31 Jul 07
Yeh I guess we all use it to check our money in the bank
@sunshinecup (7881)
31 Jul 07
Nope not one darn time. It was a waste of my time completely. No I don't think it should mandatory, but optional.
2 people like this
• United States
31 Jul 07
I think it should be optional as well because I don't use it either
@GardenGerty (101679)
• United States
31 Jul 07
Algebra is just a method of dealing with numbers and I loved it. If I know what I need to find out, I usually set up some kind of an equation to figure it out. I do believe that sometimes students get tracked into "higher math" and do not continue with their basic everyday math, and that is a loss right there. I think we need both. All the way through school. Granted, some of the second year algebra and trigonometry and such is more suitable for engineering students.I think first year algebra is just a way to organize your mathematical thinking.
• United States
31 Jul 07
NEVER! I didn't like it and since the day I left school I have never had the need for that knowledge. I also did not like geometry very much but I have used that knowledge now and then. I suppose the choice to learn it in school should be there but I also think it should not be mandatory.
2 people like this
@BlackBay (584)
• Canada
31 Jul 07
I have to say I never used the algebra and couldn't help my kid properly when she had homework that had it...totally forgot most of the math from school,lol.And forget some of the new math they are teaching.+ - x and / that's all about I need and I think for most people too.I do like % espeacially the 75-80% off kind,LOL.
2 people like this
@Kowgirl (3491)
• United States
31 Jul 07
Yes it did come in handy when working in electronics. Everything comes back to numbers somehow. So knowing how to decipher the schematics and work out the formulas to make the PC(Printed Circuit)boards we use in everything today Algebra played a big part in that. I think they will need it more in the future, so yes it should be taught in school.
2 people like this
• United States
3 Aug 07
Yes I did use my algebra I had to take. I used the algebra to figure out how much units/ per/ milligrams/killigrams/ of dopamine and dobutamine to give my patients when I was in nursing. I also had to figure other medications dosages of uniter/liter per drops per minute. I did use that nasty algebra.
@tad1fan (3373)
• Canada
1 Aug 07
I think algebra is very important for those who are going to further their careers where it's needed.....but,for me,I hated it and still had to learn it and don't need it at all for what I do.....I say they should leave it out of the schools.....just teach the basics in math and if the individual needs it for their career choice,they can learn it than.....focus on reading and writing,there are way too many Canandians and Americans graduating these days who can't read or write.....
1 person likes this
• United States
31 Jul 07
NEVER! I didn't like it and since the day I left school I have never had the need for that knowledge. I also did not like geometry very much but I have used that knowledge now and then. I suppose the choice to learn it in school should be there but I also think it should not be mandatory.
1 person likes this
• Switzerland
31 Jul 07
In day to day life, we do come across situations where we calculate things. It is better to learn it in school and use it whenever needed, than go and learn when you need it.
1 person likes this
@ctrymuziklvr (11059)
• United States
31 Jul 07
Algebra equation - Can't do it!
I always hated math in school and even now in my life I have a hard time with it. I think we do use it but don't realize it.
@ibuemma (2954)
• United States
31 Jul 07
Right now, not at all. hahaha...think only think calculating that I use only money come and money go...LOL....housewife simple accounting.
1 person likes this
@truartiss (386)
• United States
31 Jul 07
Not at all. I liked all my math classes but I have yet to use anything from Calculus and Statistics in my everyday life. I feel it should only be taught to those who plan on being an accountant or something. :)
1 person likes this
@JoyfulOne (6242)
• United States
31 Jul 07
Geez, I hate algebra as much now as I did when I was in school, lol. (Hey...maybe even more because I'm out of practice!) I have had to use algebra on occasion when doing carpentry projects. I don't like to, but sometimes it's the only way to get the proper cut figured out. You also use a bit of it when figuring out how much paint to buy when you paint your house, and things like that. I always have to look up the correct 'formula' though, it just never sticks in my brain how to go about getting from point a to point b with an x in the equation. As far as it being taught in school...yes, I think that maybe one year of it should be mandatory (still.) Although I think it should be taught with real life situations in mind so that the student can see how useful it might be in the future to have a basic understanding of it. When I went to high school, you had to have 2 years of it. (That was far more than I wanted, or needed, to know. My poor brain just aches thinking of it...oh, the HORROR of it all...eeeeeeeekkkkkkkkkk!!!!!!!!! Now I'm going to be having algebra nightmares all over again just thinkin' about it, haahaha)
@Pigglies (9339)
• United States
21 Aug 07
Every day! But at my job I proofread diagrams (so basically, I do math all day long). However, it's also been useful for side money... tutoring for algebra. And I've used it on numerous occasions just for random things. I'd say for sure it could come in handy for anyone.
@Lydia1901 (16354)
• United States
8 Aug 07
I have not used any algebra that I have learned so far. The only thing that I remember using it the basic math and not all the complicating ones.