Bon Jovi – Livin’ On a Prayer
The following is yet another example (as if you needed any more) of how painful it is to be enrolled in Mr. Hunsberger’s 7th grade Algebra class.
Today’s objective was that students would be able to solve systems of equations by elimination. Rather than boring my non-mathematical readers with the gritty details, suffice it to say, that you are solving for two variables (usually x and y).
Now teaching my students the method of elimination to solve for one variable usually takes quite a bit of time, and there is not a little bit of satisfaction when a correct value is finally identified.
“x = -3” they will correctly tell me, with quite some definitiveness. Yet, as their teacher it is my job to remind my students that, although we’ve solved for x, in actuality, we’re half-way there…
(…groan…, some of you immediately see where I’m going with this…)
“Whoooooa-oooah!”, I call out. Looks of astonished silence from 26 faces. Again.
“Whoooooa-oooah! We’re halfway there!”, pausing to ask them about why we’re only halfway there.
While the correct answer is that we’ve still got to solve for the variable y, I tell them I would also accept as correct, the sung phrase “Whoooooa-oooah! Livin’ on a prayer!” (Interesting enough, they all know this 1986 song. Thank you Guitar Hero).
Ah, the pain of being subjugated to the awful humor of an algebra teacher. Hopefully these kids won’t be scarred for life.