Sunday, 22 September 2019

The Horror ! .


We've been on holiday to Anglesey in North Wales and the weather was brilliant and we did lots of walking , the only slight 'downer' was that I forgot to take any reading matter with me , so I  ended up perusing  the books in our hired cottage . There was the usual selection of dog eared paperbacks - you always get an Agatha Christie and a James Herriot or two - but I was surprised to see this book 'Teach Yourself  Books - Algebra' . This brought a shudder to my soul ! - I was taught Algebra at school in the late 1960's , I was in the 'A' stream and so was thought worthy to be given this dubious privilege , it was taught by no lesser personage than the Headmaster Mr Foss and it blighted my life and set in place a scheme to leave education as soon as I could . The book was originally published in 1942 (you would have thought they would have had other thing on their minds ?) and brought back painful memories , it is a tribute to the teaching skills of Mr Foss that I did remember the odd thing about the subject when dipping into the book (removing brackets ! - why?). I can say that I'm not aware of ever using Algebra in the next 50 years and have felt much better for it ! . It was obviously a work of love by the author P. Abbot who wrote very enthusiastically on the subject in the forward - but who would want to teach themselves Algebra ? . I carefully replaced the book next to the James Herriot's and left it for the next visitors to muse over. 

8 comments:

  1. Nearly 50 years have passed since my first algebra class too. I still use it daily!

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  2. I never went deep into like engineers and various tech people but being able to handle simple equations and formulae has often been useful at work and occasionally at home. None the worse for at least though I also know many who have thrived without it.

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    1. I'm told we use the principals of Algebra daily without knowing it

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  3. If it hadn't been for Abbot's book and Mr Foss, we'd never have solved the Enigma codes. We have to be grateful.

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    1. 'Ronnie' Foss was very O.S. and I must admit apart from inflicting Algebra on me I quite liked him .

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  4. I'm giving up making this comment. Spell check keeps garbling my message.

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