Sinquefield Cup Round 6: SO...Nakamura!


The 6th round of the Sinquefield Cup 2015 finished on Saturday finished with Carlsen and Aronian tied for first. But the news wasn't about the tournament leaders, it was about the So-Nakamura game. The top players in the world have their ratings and rankings for a reason--they're capable of playing inspired chess that the rest of us can only marvel at. Nakamura had a game that was so scintillating, SO..Nakamura (sorry Wesley), it's destined to be make his "Best Games" collection. If you haven't seen it, you can play through the moves below.

Despite the beautiful chess, the position shown after 29. Kg2 had computer analysis finding even stronger, more exact moves. While Nakamura found 29...Be3, which we humans want to give an exclamation mark, the fact is that the computers found a crushing continuation: 29...h3+! 30. Kxh3 Rf2!! leading to many fantastic winning lines. The chess engine I was following had 29...Be3 as -5.68 and 29...h3+ as -13.18.

Here are some stories that caught my eye over the last week:

  • The NY Times has an opinion piece on "Why Vouchers Won't Fix Vegas Schools". The writer's argument seems to be, "Nevada parents do need choices, but far more than these vouchers can provide." ---deny all NV parents choice because not enough choices are provided. Huh?
  • There's been a new addition to CTAN that looks great: the cleanthesis package provides "...a clean, sim­ple, and el­e­gant LATEX style for the­sis doc­u­ments."
  • Think you have the right to free speech? ZeroHedge reports that Rutgers University tells its students they don't. Moreover, at Northwestern University, citing The Chronicle of Higher Education, "Ms. Dreger resigned this week from Northwestern University, where she was a clinical professor of medical humanities and bioethics, a nontenured gig she’d had for the past decade. In her letter, she writes that when she started at Northwestern, the university vigorously defended her academic freedom. Now, she contends, that’s no longer the case." A complicated story to summarize but the conclusion is noteworthy "The idea that institutions must acknowledge wrongdoing is central to Ms. Dreger’s academic work. It’s a theme of her recent book Galileo’s Middle Finger: Heretics, Activists, and the Search for Justice in Science, which takes to task organizations that try to stifle academic freedom or single out scholars for their provocative views.". Freedom of speech is under assault at the college level.
  • reports, "Old Dominion University has vowed to punish a fraternity for hanging three banners from a balcony bearing the messages: “Rowdy and fun—hope your baby girl is ready for a good time,” “Freshman daughter drop off,” and “Go ahead and drop mom off too…”." The president of the university announces, "I said at my State of the University address that there is zero tolerance on this campus for sexual assault and sexual harassment. This incident will be reviewed immediately by those on campus empowered to do so. Any student found to have violated the code of conduct will be subject to disciplinary action.". Reason weighs in on the crass display, "ODU is a public university, and is obligated to extend First Amendment rights to its students. I struggle to see how these banners could possibly be classified as anything other than constitutionally-protected speech."
  •  Yahoo News covers the results of some Common Core testin: "Even when all the results are available, it will not be possible to compare student performance across a majority of states, one of Common Core's fundamental goals.What began as an effort to increase transparency and allow parents and school leaders to assess performance nationwide has largely unraveled, chiefly because states are dropping out of the two testing groups and creating their own exams..."The whole idea of Common Core was to bring students and schools under a common definition of what success is," said Tom Loveless, a senior fellow at the Brookings Institution. "And Common Core is not going to have that. One of its fundamental arguments has been knocked out from under it."". Maybe next year?
  • merinews informs us that if you're a math teacher then you probably don't like Common Core. The article claims, "....secondary analysis of the data on reactions of teachers collected during in-service teacher trainings on concept learning and pedagogy reveals that the most resistance to change in classroom processes comes from mathematics teachers....The most common plea of the maths teachers was found to be, that by adopting concept and process-based methods the course will not be covered and hence the rule method was the right way of scoring marks in mathematics.".
  • As public backlash against Common Core forced proponents to back down from extolling its benefits to what's-the-problem-they're-only-standards, American Thinker goes a little deeper, "Common Core is about more than just a shift in educational standards.  The architects of Common Core have always planned to integrate computer technology with Common Core standards under the guise of “closing the digital divide” and “preparing our children for the 21st-century workplace.” ....Initially, in order to continue to be eligible for Obama’s “Race to the Top” federal funding, states were obligated to implement a Student Longitudinal Database System (SLDS), used to track students from preschool through college (P20-WIN).  Some of us may recall the many reports about measuring 400 data points.  This is part of SLDS.  Those of us who are paying attention may have assumed that these data points were going to be gathered via the Common Core assessments.  Perhaps some of us assumed that “opting out” or refusing the test would keep us safe.  Not so fast.  Could these one to one devices be another carefully disguised method of software-driven mass surveillance of students?  And in what other ways is data being collected?". An interesting article.

Sagetex: Indefinite Integrals 6/6b

Integral6I've added two more indefinite integrals to the Sagetex: Integrals page. The integrals are of the form \int e^{-\alpha x}\cos(\beta x)\,dx and \int e^{-\alpha x}\sin(\beta x)\,dx where \alpha, \beta are random (positive) integers.

Here are some issues that caught my eye over the last week:

  • has an interview with "...filmmaker Ted Balaker who is currently finishing up his latest documentary, "Can We Take A Joke?." The film, which features comedians Gilbert Gottfried, Jim Norton, Lisa Lampanelli, Adam Carolla, Karith Foster, and Penn Jillette, examines the role of comedy in our culture of constant outrage. "Comedians don't even have the freedom of conscience to just be neutral on something," Balaker told Reason TV's Nick Gillespie. "[They] have to affirm what the cool kids believe."". Finally someone taking on the PC zealots.
  • Inofwars has the local news on a Wisconsin school to randomly drug  test the students: "Given that it is actually unconstitutional to randomly drug test students, the school district is using a loophole to do so. Students taking part in extracurricular activities or students who park vehicles on school property will be subject to the random testing.“Participating in extracurriculars, um in public high schools is a privilege and it’s not a right, as well as parking on our school parking lot,” Dorschner explained.Tests will be conducted by randomly picking student identification numbers via computer every fortnight.Should a student test positive, or refuse to be tested, they will be barred from athletic involvement, mandated to attend counseling, and their parents will be alerted. The school says it will not expel any students or involve police."
  • on presidential candidate Carly Fiorina's criticism of Common Core. The beginning of its expected prominent place in election topics? She said, "Common Core may have started out as a set of standards, but what it’s turned into is a program that honestly is being overly influenced by companies that have something to gain, testing companies and textbook companies, and it’s becoming a set of standards, not on what a kid has to learn but instead on how a teacher has to teach and how a student should learn, and that kind of standardization is always going to drive achievement down, not up." I couldn't agree more.
  • A new pentagonal tiling has been discovered. See RedOrbit or check out what NPR says, "In other words: It's possible that that there are dozens — hundreds, thousands even — of these convex pentagon shapes waiting to be discovered. Up until last month, only 14 had been found, and for all anyone knew, that list could have been final. But last month, a cluster of computers that Von Derau was using to run though different shapes spit out an intriguing possibility...The three mathematicians had discovered the first new convex pentagon able to tile the plane in some 30 years. The scientists had become a part of a legendary history that dates to 1918, when the German mathematician Karl Reinhardt described the first five types of pentagons to be able to tile the plane."
  • again with a story about, "A Minnesota student who had to transfer high schools to avoid an expulsion for an incredibly short, wholly inoffensive Tweet can sue the district for violating his First and Fourteenth Amendment rights, a federal judge ruled. The student, Reid Sagehorn, first landed himself in trouble with Elk River School District administrators in January of 2014, according to Education Week. He was asked on an internet message board whether he had made out with a certain 28-year-old teacher at Rogers High School; he tweeted his two-word answer: “actually, yeah.” Sagehorn later claimed that he was joking."
  • with a good piece on Brazil's Artur Avilla, winner of a Field's Medal in mathematics.
  • Raven's guard, football player Dr. John Urschel decides to test his mathematical skills after receiving a concussion: "No word as to how Urschel performed on the math questions, but we're willing to bet pretty well, concussion or not."
  • The Sinquefield Cup, hailed as the highest rated chess tournament in history last year and won by Caruana in historic fashion, has the first round today. It will continue until September 3. Spotskeeda gives a preview. The rounds can be followed live here.


Spotlight: Annie Easley

Have you ever heard of Annie Easley before? I recall hearing the name but there was no context as to who she was or what she had accomplished. I'd never taken the time to look into the matter until I recently ran across an article, written back in February, about her which I think deserves special mention. Having the chance to read about her remarkable achievements, however, makes it clear that she would be an excellent personality to spotlight in a math course.  The article is from Engadget and is titled, "Annie Easley helped make modern space flight possible". The first 2 sentences makes it clear how special a person Annie Easley was, "Few people are brilliant enough to be a computer programmer or a mathematician. Even fewer can add "rocket scientist for NASA" to their resume. Annie Easley, however, was all three. During her 34-year career, she worked not only on technologies that led to hybrid vehicles, but also on software that enabled great strides in spaceflight and exploration. And if that wasn't notable enough, Easley also did all of this as one of the first few African-Americans in her field.".Raised by a single mother during a time when schools were racially segregated she was valedictorian of her class and graduated with a major in pharmacy. Her rise to fame started in 1955 when she began working as a "human calculator"  for National Advisory Committee for Aeronautics (NACA). According to the article, "Easley was only one of about four African-Americans on staff. NACA would eventually become NASA's Lewis Research Center, which then became the John H. Glenn Research Center.

This, as it happens, was a turning point in her career. She went from being a human computer to a math technician (as the department received actual computers to do the calculations). She decided then to pursue mathematics as a degree and attended classes full-time at Cleveland State University while also working full-time at NACA. While other male colleagues had their undergraduate tuition paid for, she had to pay for her courses with her own money.". She continued evolving, learning computer programming to help with her job and, "Her skills were also put to use when NASA was developing software for the Centaur, a high-energy booster rocket that is also known as "America's Workhorse in Space." Utilizing a mix of liquid hydrogen and liquid oxygen, the Centaur proved to be the most powerful upper stage in the US space program.".

Her story is inspirational from so many angles, as a woman, an African-American, being raised by a single mom, and the drive to educate herself. There's also the interesting concept of human calculators, the problems with racial discrimination and,last but not least, her achievements. So if you like to mix math personalities and history into your lessons, make sure you put Annie Easley into your lessons. Besides the article link and Wikipedia link, here are some other links with information about Annie Easely:

There was a mistake in the last post relating to Integral5 for Sagetex problems: the problem itself was missing. I'm still not sure how that got "lost" but I've fixed the problem with an updated file. Thanks to the readers who caught the mistake!

Here are some stories which caught my eye this week:

  • The NY Times has a piece on teacher shortages. As someone who tried to teach in the California public school system only to confronted with about two years of hurdles, I feel confident that the "shortages" wouldn't be so bad if they'd worried about qualifications and not about putting applicants through a bewildering array of BS to meet their definition of "qualified". Remember, when schools talk about a lack of qualified people to teach that's code for a lack of certified people to teach. There is a big difference between qualified and certified.
  • The Atlantic has a good piece on "The Coddling of the American Mind". The term inafantilizing and anti-intellectual is used in describing it. But it really seems more akin to chilling attack on free speech and a lack of tolerance for other opinions. Think McCarthyism. has a look at the article and a video interview with "...Northwestern University Professor Laura Kipnis about feminism and emotional fragility on campuses.".
  • also looks into Zachary Hammond, the mudered student mentioned in the last post.
  • Sputnik news with a look into how Chicago's budget problems are leading to teacher layoffs. From the article, "Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel, President Barack Obama’s former Chief of Staff, has approved the firing of almost 1,500 teachers and staff from the city’s public schools, according to media reports.The firings were revealed when the Chicago public schools system announced its controversial $5.7 billion budget for Fiscal Year 2016 on Monday that includes a $200 million cut in resources, including payments for staff and a $1.1 billion annual deficit, the reports said.The deficit has expanded because of the soaring costs of entitlements and a historic $1.1 billion budget deficit driven by rapidly rising pension payments."
  • on "Academic Fascism" in discussing the topic of microaggressions that are getting more and more attention.
  • notes "A program launched with a $1 million state contract will provide teachers, administrators, and staff in all Arkansas public schools with a “panic button” to quickly notify 911 of an emergency, whether it’s a fire or an active shooter situation. The buttons will be supplied by Rave Mobile Safety, thanks to a $950,000 contract the company signed with the Arkansas Department of Emergency Management earlier this summer, the Associated Press reported."Read more here.

Sagetex: Indefinite Integrals 5


I've added another indefinite integral to the Sagetex: Integrals page involving tabular integration of \int x^{a}e^{bx} dx where 2 \leq a, b \leq 3. Ideally some arrows would help make the solution a little easier to understand but I wasn't up to spending the extra time needed to implement that change

Here are some stories that caught my eye this past week.

  • A memorable story from the Daily Beast: "The Teen Who Exposed a Professor's Myth" with byline "The Internet has been buzzing about how discrimination against the Irish was a myth. All it took was a high schooler to prove them wrong.". It's staggering to see what passes for scholarship outside of mathematics and the other hard sciences. And, of course, I'm not counting statistics in with math.
  • WAFF in Alabama reports local students will get a choice of when they go to school, "It's time for Madison City students to head back to school Wednesday morning. Some students will be setting their alarms a little earlier than normal this year. That's because students can now take a class that starts earlier than the time school usually starts. For example, they can take a math class at 7:30 a.m. instead of 830 a.m. The program is called "options open.""
  • Seed Magazine has a fascinating article on the connections between prime numbers and quantum physics. "It was a chance meeting between physicist Freeman Dyson and number theorist Hugh Montgomery in 1972, over tea at Princeton’s Institute for Advanced Study, that revealed a stunning new connection in the story of the primes—one that might finally provide a clue about how to navigate Riemann’s landscape. They discovered that if you compare a strip of zeros from Riemann’s critical line to the experimentally recorded energy levels in the nucleus of a large atom like erbium, the 68th atom in the periodic table of elements, the two are uncannily similar...There is an important sequence of numbers called “the moments of the Riemann zeta function.” Although we know abstractly how to define it, mathematicians have had great difficulty explicitly calculating the numbers in the sequence. We have known since the 1920s that the first two numbers are 1 and 2, but it wasn’t until a few years ago that mathematicians conjectured that the third number in the sequence may be 42—a figure greatly significant to those well-versed in The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy. It would also prove to be significant in confirming the connection between primes and quantum physics. Using the connection, Keating and Snaith not only explained why the answer to life, the universe and the third moment of the Riemann zeta function should be 42, but also provided a formula to predict all the numbers in the sequence. Prior to this breakthrough, the evidence for a connection between quantum physics and the primes was based solely on interesting statistical comparisons."
  • Sputnik news on a shocking case that has made a lot of waves, "Two elementary school students from Kentucky were traumatized after a deputy sheriff handcuffed the kids for behavior associated with their learning disabilities, a lawsuit filed on Monday claims." There's video of the shackling for you to judge the case for yourself.
  • In an earlier post I noted Jerry Seinfeld and other comedians who have voiced their displeasure at the ultra-PC nature of today's college campuses. The Atlantic's story "That's Not Funny!" digs deeper into the changing attitudes. Be aware you should, to be safe, read this in your own residence. From the article, "When I attended the convention in Minneapolis in February, I saw ample evidence of the repressive atmosphere that Rock and Seinfeld described, as well as another, not unrelated factor: the infantilization of the American undergraduate, and this character’s evolving status in the world of higher learning—less a student than a consumer, someone whose whims and affectations (political, sexual, pseudo-intellectual) must be constantly supported and championed.".
  • R.T. news on controversial coverage of a recent student who was shot. "After an independent autopsy showed that Zachary Hammond was shot by police from behind, the family of the unarmed South Carolina teen is wondering at the lack of national outrage in this case. Hammond was white...Dubose’s killing has attracted national attention, but Hammond’s was barely noticed. According to the Los Angeles Times, while Dubose’s name was mentioned in over 43,000 tweets between July 26 and August 4, Hammond’s appeared in 289 tweets in the same time period...Bland, the attorney for Hammond’s family, finds the discrepancy “very disturbing.”"An unarmed white teenager whose life is wrongfully taken at the hands of overzealous police is the same and equal to an unarmed black teenager whose life is wrongfully taken at the hands of overzealous police,"he told the LA Times.".
  • R.T. again with a British teenager "inspired " by Columbine and other US shootings. "A British teenager found guilty of plotting a Columbine-style massacre was obsessed with US high school shooters and Heath Ledger’s portrayal of the Joker in “The Dark Knight.” Liam Lyburd, 19, was hours away from carrying out a killing spree at Newcastle College, a further education institution where 18,000 young people study, using a handgun and homemade bombs when police raided his home."
  • The Daily Beast with another article on the idiocy of the language police taking over: "The Bias-Free Language Guide is a massive wall of text that explains why common word choices, phrases, and modifiers are unwelcome in polite discourse. Its purpose is to assist in the creation of “an inclusive learning community” by raising awareness of trivial slights in everyday language that, “for some, feels like a form of violence.” Its authors, UNH Coordinator of Community Equity and Diversity Sylvia Foster among them, intended the guide as tool for molding a more feelings-conscious campus. But if their advice had ever been followed by a significant number of students and faculty members, everyone would have soon found themselves walking on eggshells 100 percent of the time. Some examples are in order. Instead of referring to the elderly as senior citizens (or even as the elderly), members of the UNH community are encouraged to embrace the most up-to-date politically-correct terminology: “people of advanced age” in this case, according to the guide. This is supposed to be somehow less derogatory than “senior citizen,” which of course was once the politically correct of saying “old.” A poor person is not a poor person; he or she (or ze! At least according to the section on gender-queer pronouns) is a “person living at or below the poverty line.” OK, fine. But by the same token, one should say that the rich are “persons of material wealth,” since persons living at or below the poverty line may be rich in character, or spirit, or any number of other things. Fat people are not fat, overweight, or obese; they are “people of size,” a decidedly abstract description. Are all of us not people of size, in some sense?...The guide’s advice is occasionally contradictory. It notes that some of the supposedly derogatory terms are no longer considered derogatory in certain circles. The word “fat,” for instance, “is increasingly being reclaimed by people of size and their allies, yet for some, it is a term that comes from pain.”"

Definite Integrals 3


A light week: I've added another problem on finding the area between 2 curves to the Sagetex: Integrals page and put some of the information from last week's entry (on getting the points used in plotting implicitly) to the Sage Essentials page. Here are some stories which caught my eye over the last week:

  • Propublica, the investigative journalist site--a rare thing in today's environment of junk news-- has an interesting article "Georgia is Segregating Troublesome Kids in Schools Used During Jim Crow". From the article "As ProPublica has documented in a series of stories on the resegregation of America’s schools, hundreds of school districts across the nation have been released from court-enforced integration over the past 15 years. Over that same time period, the number of so-called apartheid schools — schools whose white population is 1 percent or less — has shot up. The achievement gap, greatly narrowed during the height of school desegregation, has widened. “American schools are disturbingly racially segregated, period,” Catherine Lhamon, head of the U.S. Education Department’s civil rights office, said in an October speech. “We are reserving our expectations for our highest rigor level of courses, the courses we know our kids need to be able to be full and productive members of society, but we are reserving them for a class of kids who are white and who are wealthier.”".
  • DNAInfo reports on a teacher who committed suicide after investigators found she forged test answers, "The principal of an elementary school who killed herself the day after her students took the state’s third-grade exams forged test answers after multiple students failed to complete their tests, a city investigation found. The test results have been invalidated. Jeanene Worrell-Breeden, 49, principal of the Teachers College Community School since it opened in 2011, died after jumping in front of a B Train on 135th Street in April, less than 24 hours after the Common Core test, the New York Post first reported. The Office of Special Investigations was looking into the test results after a tipster's email accused Worrell-Breeden of forging answers on the Third Grade English Language Arts exam, according to the DOE."
  • Forbes tells us that education is expected to be a major issue in the upcoming presidential elections. If you've been reading this blog, you already know that.
  •  The LATimes informs us that the "US wins gold at International Math Olympiad for the first time since 1994".
  • The Capital Journal reports that "Due to concerns over the state's dwindling supply of qualified teachers, the South Dakota Board of Education meeting in Pierre Monday adopted a new rule  that would make it easier for middle school teachers to get certified to teach math.". From someone who has seen first hand how qualified teachers are turned away by certification requirements that aren't based on qualifications (here), this is only going to weaken the educational system more. But letting teachers teach without going through the traditional training route is a threat to the teaching colleges.

Plotting with sagetex: implicit plots revisited


Earlier I had looked into Implicit Plots and found a way to do them which depended on whether they were connected or disconnected. Recently I found a way of determining the points that Sage is using to construct the plots. This eliminates the need for two cases BUT we have to take more care in plotting the graph. I've added information on plotting implicitly to the Plotting with Sagetex page. The key breakthrough was determining a way to determine the points that Sage used in plotting functions implicitly.  Sage is using a grid of points, which I called gridDim. The gridDim is the number of points on each side of the side of the grid. Since the plot is going from x=-3 to x=3 and y=-3 to y=3 there are (250)x(250) points that will be turned "on" by Sage if they are on the curve and "off" if they are not on the curve.Since an implicit plot is solving the equation f(x,y)=0, in order to have it plotted by the computer I chose to consider the point on the curve if it was "close" by making sure

if abs(C1.xy_data_array[i][j])<.02:

The value .02 was chosen from my experiments with plotting; change to .01 and the plot thins out too much for my liking while .03 starts to thicken the plots too much. You can find a more in depth discussion as well as 2 sample templates to experiment with, on the Plotting with Sagetex page.

Here are some stories which caught my eye recently:

  • hosts a piece on micoagressions.There is increasing pressure on college admin to think "correctly".From the article, "Early this year, the University of California’s president, Janet Napolitano, asked all deans and department chairs in the university’s ten campuses to undergo training in overcoming their “implicit biases” toward women and minorities. The department heads also needed training, according to the UC president, in how to avoid committingmicroaggressions, those acts of alleged racism that are invisible to the naked eye. A more insulting and mindless exercise would be hard to imagine. But Napolitano’s seminar possesses a larger significance: it demolishes any remaining hope that college administrators possess a firmer grip on reality than the narcissistic students over whom they preside."
  • The New York Times has an excellent piece on "The Singular Mind of Terry Tao". Terry Tao is considered to be one of the top mathematicians alive today. From the article, "But it turned out that the work of real mathematicians bears little resemblance to the manipulations and memorization of the math student. Even those who experience great success through their college years may turn out not to have what it takes. The ancient art of mathematics, Tao has discovered, does not reward speed so much as patience, cunning and, perhaps most surprising of all, the sort of gift for collaboration and improvisation that characterizes the best jazz musicians. Tao now believes that his younger self, the prodigy who wowed the math world, wasn’t truly doing math at all. ‘‘It’s as if your only experience with music were practicing scales or learning music theory,’’ he said, looking into light pouring from his window. ‘‘I didn’t learn the deeper meaning of the subject until much later.’’
  • has another piece on the LA public school system's attempts to get a star teacher fired."Esquith, who teaches low-income and minority fifth graders, made a joke about the difficulty he was having raising enough funds for the yearly Shakespeare production, which he finances through donations to his non-profit. As I previously noted, “While reading a passage from Huckleberry Finn in which ‘the king came prancing out on all fours, naked,’ Esquith remarked that if he couldn’t raise additional funds for his annual production, he supposed ‘the class would have to similarly perform naked.’” The joke was overheard by another teacher, who deemed it inappropriate and reported Esquith to the principal, Jonathan Paek....Paek made Esquith sign a humiliating letter of apology:...Esquith was suspended anyway, and now sits in one of the infamous “rubber rooms” while he waits for the district to decide his fate. Officials are doing their best to dig up dirt on him".
  • The reports on "The federal government is spending $125,000 to study adjectives that could be perceived as sexist or racist.". A good use of taxpayer money?
  • reports on "How 'Adjunct' Professors are Exploited". From the article, "According to data collected by the Chronicle of Higher Education, adjuncts at one college and two universities near my home in Southeast Florida earn between $1,380 and $3,000 to teach a fifteen-week, three-credit course. My own university’s published rates range from $1,500 to $3,000. A national survey found the average pay for a three-credit course to be $2,700...Given that the typical equation for calculating preparation and grading time for a three-credit course is three hours for every one hour of class time, it’s safe to assume that adjuncts put in a good 135 hours during a semester. That works out to just over $10 an hour for someone making the lowest rate and about $22 an hour for the higher rate based on the rates listed above...A report from the University of California at Berkeley found that nearly a quarter of all adjunct professors receive some form of public assistance, like food stamps or Medicaid. Many must, as grown educated adults with advanced degrees, live with their families, and struggle to afford basic food requirements. One adjunct professor reported, “I lived off of fried potatoes and onions for the semester. I actually lived better as a grad student than I do now.”.."

tkz-euclide: Snell's Law



Snell's Law is a formula in basic physics which follows easily from Calculus. This makes it worth deriving in your class. I've put together 2 diagrams (the PDFs can be downloaded from the Graphics page) and I've posted the approach to designing these graphics using just the basics of Altermundus' tkz-euclide package. That's posted here and the tex files are attached for you to modify/adjust the colors or notation.

Here are some stories that caught my eye this week:

  • livescience has an article "New Brain-Like Computer May Solve World's Most Complex Math Problems" which looks at a new type of computer design, "In contrast, Massimiliano Di Ventra, a theoretical physicist at the University of California, San Diego, and his colleagues are building "memcomputers," made up of "memprocessors," that both process and store data. This setup mimics the neurons that make up the human brain, with each neuron serving as both the processor and the memory...Now, Di Ventra and his colleagues have built a prototype memcomputer they say can efficiently solve one type of notoriously difficult computational problem. Moreover, they built their memcomputer from standard microelectronics...The new memcomputer solves the NP-complete version of what is called the subset sum problem. In this problem, one is given a set of integers — whole numbers such as 1 and negative 1, but not fractions such as 1/2 — ."
  • The Journal Gazette reports, "A 15-year-old high school student visiting Boston's Museum of Science has uncovered a math error in the golden ratio at a 34-year-old exhibit....Joseph noticed minus signs in the equation where there should have been plus signs. He left a message at the desk and later received a letter from the museum's exhibit content developer, Alana Parkes, informing him the equation would be corrected. Parkes wrote the mistake had been there for a "very long time" without being noticed."
  • The Daily Beast notes "Only one in eight Common Core-aligned textbooks actually meet Common Core standards—and none by textbook giants Pearson or Houghton Mifflin Harcourt—but they were repackaged and sold to public schools anyway, at taxpayers’ expense."
  • The Statesman Journal tells the story of a letter sent by a school to parents "The third paragraph of the letter begins: "Children must be picked up on time. If they are not picked up on time we will call DHS and you will then have to pick them up at court the next day." The letter also talks about dropping children off in the morning. "We will be serving breakfast at 7:45 a.m. at no cost," the letter said. Cafeteria will close at 8:15 a.m. for breakfast. If your child is running late, please feed them at home before sending them to school. Please do not drop your children off before this time. There will not be supervision. If children are dropped before 7:40 the staff will call the authorities."". Parents are upset and a district spokesman says the letter was sent in error. So----they said it but didn't mean it.
  • RT reports on the politicization of history in school. "In addition, the books will teach that the Civil War was caused by “sectionalism, states’ rights and slavery" ‒ in that particular order so as to emphasize the idea that slavery was not the main driver of war, and that, in the context of the 1860s, states' rights and slavery were not intertwined. Slavery was "a side issue to the Civil War," conservative state education board member Pat Hardysaid in 2010 when the board was considering new standards. “There would be those who would say the reason for the Civil War was over slavery. No. It was over states’ rights.""
  • has the article, "'Free' Community College Already Costs 50 Percent More than Originally Estimated". From the article, "For those who missed the whole thing, here are the basics: President Barack Obama and several leading Democrats want to make community college free for students who would then transfer to four-year colleges for bachelor's degrees and for those who are in training programs for occupations that the state determines to be part of an "in-demand industry sector." The federal government will pay two-thirds of the cost, but states will have to chip in one-third to participate...None of these plans seem to seriously deal with the fact that its government subsidies to education that have driven up these costs. That massive debt middle class students are racking up isn't paying for instructors. It's paying for boatloads after boatloads of administrators making plum salaries for managing these reform programs that the government insists will make colleges better. The government isn't making college cheaper. It's making it even more expensive.". Quantity of education doesn't equal quality so this seems like an even bigger waste of money. Remember this post? where you'll find the quote from a Michael Snyder article, "In Japan, Finland and the Netherlands, young adults with only a high school degree scored on par with American Millennials holding four-year college degrees, the report said". The article also says "It also mandates community college systems provide plans for "institutional reforms and innovative practices to improve student outcomes." I suppose writing on a slip of paper "Grade inflation!" would not qualify."  If they could deliver a quality public school education that resulted in literate students with good math skills there'd be no need for this. But they can't. So what's the quality of education that students will get in a school that needs to "improve student outcomes". No question mark there because it's more of the same low quality education. Excellence in education is found mainly in private schools and public schools in affluent areas where the parents help to assure the quality.
  • Solve my maths has a post Concentric Circles Problem that would be useful for a lot of math teachers. The Humor section of the site has some nice content too.
  • notes, "A bill introduced in the New Jersey State Senate last month seeks to put a three-year moratorium on the growth of charter schools in the state.In a blistering op-ed this week in NJ Spotlight, Dale Caldwell, the head of school at the Village Charter School in Trenton, argues that the New Jersey Education Association (NJEA), the state's largest teachers union, is behind the legislation. The union's goal: to preserve its monopoly over public education in the state.". The posted video is worth your time. The "blistering op-ed" piece is here.

Resource: Internet Archive


Who doesn't like quality, free resources? The Internet Archive explains on their About page: "The Internet Archive is a 501(c)(3) non-profit that was founded to build an Internet library. Its purposes include offering permanent access for researchers, historians, scholars, people with disabilities, and the general public to historical collections that exist in digital format.

Founded in 1996 and located in San Francisco, the Archive has been receiving data donations from Alexa Internet and others. In late 1999, the organization started to grow to include more well-rounded collections. Now the Internet Archive includes: texts, audio, moving images, and software as well as archived web pages in our collections, and provides specialized services for adaptive reading and information access for the blind and other persons with disabilities.".

What separates the Internet Archive from other resources is threefold: the quality of their resources, the range of resources (books, software, audio, video) and the ability to read through many of the books by flipping through the text (as well as downloading it in a variety of formats). Take a look at Kotov's "Grandmaster at Work"


Notice the 2 red boxes? The box at the bottom displays a variety of formats that you can download the book in. The box near the top right surrounds the "Full screen" button. Press that button to go into full screen mode.


Clicking on the right hand page flips the book forward, while the left hand page flips you back. So you can browse the resource online. Notice that the screenshot above has two more red boxes. The one in the top right hand corner will activate the voice reading of the book. The red square in the bottom left hand corner is a slider that can quickly get you to deep inside the book without flipping each page.


My only complaint is that the Search feature wasn't as helpful in finding the resources. I failed to find some books through searching "mathematics" which turned up in other unrelated searches.Here are some links to get you started:

Spivak: Calculus book, Supplement for the book, Dugopolski: Precalculus, Beginning and Intermediate Algebra,lots of CK-12 series books CK 12 AlgebraCK 12 Algebra II with Trigonometry, MOOCulus Sequence and Series Textbook, Advanced Math 2Python Programming, Soltis: What it takes to become a chess master, Botvinnik: Half a Century of Chess, Alburt: Test and Improve Your Chess, Kosikov: Elements of Chess Strategy, lots of old Schaum's books, and so much more! I've added the link to the Internet Archive to the sidebar.

Here are some stories which caught my eye the last week:

  • The Intercept looks at "NO CHILD LEFT UN-MINED? STUDENT PRIVACY AT RISK IN THE AGE OF BIG DATA". From the article, "“What if potential employers can buy the data about you growing up and in school?” asks mathematician Cathy O’Neil, who’s finishing a book on big data and blogs at In some of the educational tracking systems, which literally log a child’s progress on software keystroke by keystroke, “We’re giving a persistence score as young as age 7 — that is, how easily do you give up or do you keep trying? Once you track this and attach this to [a child’s] name, the persistence score will be there somewhere.” O’Neil worries that just as credit scores are now being used in hiring decisions, predictive analytics based on educational metrics may be applied in unintended ways. Such worries came to the fore last week when educational services giant Pearson announced that it was selling the company PowerSchool, which tracks student performance, to a private equity firm for $350 million. The company was started independently; sold to Apple; then to Pearson; and now to Vista Equity Partners. Each owner in turn has to decide how to manage the records of some 15 million students across the globe, according to Pearson."
  • reports on famous author Judy Blume warning about censorship in today's world.
  • Huffington Post has a piece on Dr. John Urschel, professional football player, on why more kids don't like math.
  • Microagrressions, which I mentioned in this post, are back again. Although I learned "America is a melting pot", that's now a color blindess microaggression because it denies a person of color's racial/ethnic experience. The College Fix can help get you up-to-date on on the latest witch hunt. From the article, "University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point officials have advised faculty that the term “America is a melting pot” is a racial microaggression. The common phrase was among a list of examples of so-called racial microaggressions used “as a discussion item for some new faculty and staff training over the past few years,” a campus official told The College Fix in an email. Other phrases on the list included: “You are a credit to your race,” “where are you from,” “there is only one race, the human race,” “I believe the most qualified person should get the job” and “everyone can succeed in this society if they work hard enough.”. Take some time and look at the lists from University of Wisconsin and University of California. Lots of the examples on the list are ambiguous in the sense that it presumes you know WHY a comment was made. So the example, to a woman of color about "I would never have guessed you were a scientist." is considered a microaggression. because it's assumed you said it because she's a woman which means it could be perceived as insulting her intelligence. Apparently it's okay to to say it to a white male, though, because it wouldn't be an attack on his intelligence....wait, what? Or if you've mistaken a faculty of color mistaken for a service worker then it assumes you've done it because they are of color and not because of how they were dressed, where they, or who they looked like. Heck, I've been mistaken for someone working in a store that I was shopping in for who knows what reason.  Should I have been insulted? HOLDING AN OPINION that, "Affirmative action is racist" IS FORBIDDEN because it makes it seem like one group gets extra privileges. And the common practice of empathy, such as a someone saying, "As a woman, I know what you go through as a racial minority" is enough to cause a problem. How can a woman possibly know what racial discrimination is like. Your AMBIGUOUS ACTIONS are now under assault. "A person asks a woman her age and, upon hearing she is 31, looks quickly at her ring finger" is a problem because the reason WHY you did that was you thought "Women should be married during child-bearing ages because that is their primary purpose.". If faculty are being taught that examples like they've listed are transgressions then you get an indication of how today's young are looking at the world. It's a less tolerant, "he/she said this which made me feel ___, therefore they must pay the price". Imagine spending money to get an education and coming out less educated and less tolerant. ZeroHedge has a piece on how "hate speech" is used to destroy "freedom of speech".
  • There's an annoying piece that's getting a lot of play. From the Western Morning News we hear "Myth that men are naturally better at maths than women debunked". Now you'd think that such a conclusion would be based on some test scores which would show that women scored just as well (or better) than men. No such case. From the article, "US psychologist Dr Shane Bench, from Washington State University, who led a study that involved assessing the ability of men and women to predict their performance in maths tests, said: "Gender gaps in the science, technology, engineering and maths fields are not necessarily the result of women's underestimating their abilities, but rather may be due to men's overestimating their abilities." His team conducted two studies of 300 undergraduates who were asked to have their maths skill tested before guessing how well they had fared. In the first study, participants received feedback about their real performance before they were again asked to take a test and predict their scores. For the second study, the students only sat one test without receiving any feedback, and were questioned about any plans to pursue maths-related courses Across both studies, men were consistently found to overestimate the number of problems they solved correctly while women's appraisal of their own abilities was more accurate. After receiving feedback about how well they did in the first study, men were then better at estimating their scores in the second test.". Got that? With no information on actual math scores, what does this mean?? Suppose, for example, women scored 75% on the test and then estimated they scored about 75% whereas men scored 80% and estimated they scored 85%. Then the women are more accurate at gauging their performance, but since their performance is worse, how would that debunk the claim that men are better than women at math. And to make things worse, the research said "After receiving feedback about how well they did in the first study, men were then better at estimating their scores in the second test.". I'm not sure how this "research" proves anything. It only seems to show that, without feedback on performance, women are better at appraising their performance than men. But with feedback on performance (which is what happens in the real world as students get feedback on each test throughout the semester) men are better at appraising their performance. But none of this has to do with mathematical expertise.
  • The PC climate claims another high school teacher. has the report, "An Illinois high school teacher was fired after stepping on the American flag to prove a point about free speech. The teacher, Jordan Parmenter, had been using a flag as a pointer during class on May 15. At least one student accused him of being disrespectful toward the national symbol, so Parmenter dropped the flag on the ground and stomped on it, according to Word quickly spread, and soon enough, demonstrators appeared outside Martinsville Junior-Senior High School. Parmenter wrote a letter of apology, but the school board voted 6-0 to fire him....The school board had a golden opportunity to show kids that honoring the values the flag represents is more important than honoring the flag itself. Instead, they imparted a different lesson: that no act of defiance goes unpunished by the government. Perhaps that’s an important lesson as well.".  Beware the angry mob.
  • The PC climate claims a college teacher as well. The Advocate has the story of an LSU professor, Teresa Buchanan, fired for using salty language. The teacher is fighting back with a lawsuit. From the article, "She said the university is trying to dictate how she teaches and in the process is impinging on her academic freedom. “The occasional use of profanity is not sexual harassment,” Buchanan said. “Nor is the occasional frank discussion of issues related to sexuality, particularly when done in the context of teaching specific issues related to sexuality.” LSU spokesman Ernie Ballard declined comment Friday on Buchanan’s dismissal, saying it’s a personnel matter and involves possible litigation. Buchanan was fired even though a committee of five faculty members that presided over an 11-hour dismissal review hearing held on March 9 recommended that she keep her job. While the committee found that her adult language and humor violated university policies that protect students and employees from sexual harassment, it found no evidence Buchanan’s comments were “systematically directed at any individual.” The committee recommended she be censured and agree to quit using “potentially offensive language and jokes” that some found offensive."



Sagetex: Definite Integrals


I've added two definite integrals to the Sagetex: Integrals page. The first problem creates two random parabolas in different directions and the area between the two curves must be calculated. This requires them to find the intersection points as well to set up the integral properly. The second integral gives a random exponential in e along with (random) endpoints of integration.


Here are some issues that caught my eye this past week:

  • USA Today reports "Texas is decriminalizing students' truancy": "Gov. Greg Abbott has signed into law a measure to decriminalize unexcused absences and require school districts to implement preventive measures. It will take effect Sept. 1. Reform advocates say the threat of a heavy fine — up to $500 plus court costs — and a criminal record wasn't keeping children in school and was sending those who couldn't pay into a criminal justice system spiral. Under the old law, students as young as 12 could be ordered to court for three unexcused absences in four weeks. Schools were required to file a misdemeanor failure to attend school charge against students with more than 10 unexcused absences in six months. And unpaid fines landed some students behind bars when they turned 17."
  • There's a wrinkle in a story from my last post. A teacher who was reported to have been removed from his position because he read from Mark Twain was actually removed for making an inappropriate joke (relating to a Mark Twain passage). LA Times has the details: "In his first interview since he was pulled from his fifth-grade class, Esquith told The Times on Monday that controversy stemmed from a joke he made in the classroom. He said he quipped with students that if he could not raise enough money for the annual Shakespearean play, they would all have to perform their parts naked like the king in Mark Twain's "The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn." After another teacher complained, he said he explained the context of the joke to his principal at Hobart Boulevard Elementary. The principal, he said, told him he had nothing to worry about. Nonetheless, Esquith was removed from the classroom in April."
  • EducationWeek reports on the L.A. Unified budget has reduced the spending on police. This was a victory for The Dignity in Schools Campaign which, "..demanded that the school district, which is the second largest in the country, redirect $13.1 million in funds it had planned to spend on policing practices during the 2015-16 school year into jobs and programs aimed at improving school climate. (The district is still budgeting about $54 million for school police from other parts of its budget.) Though the district school board adopted the revised budget, campaign organizers don't yet know how much of the redirected money will go toward their specific funding recommendations, which include using $8 million for restorative justice measures like technical assistance and staff training, as well as $5 million for hiring prevention and intervention staff in alternative schools to create counselor-student ratios of 1 to 50. Such investments have been proven to positively transform school climate, whereas school-based policing has not, said Ruth Cusick, an education rights attorney at Public Counsel."
  • Huffington Post's piece "Meet the 63rd Black Woman in American History with a Physics Ph.D." provides a glimpse into "the challenges faced by marginalized communities in science".
  • Put this on your radar: has an update on a case making its way through the legal system: "A little over a year ago, a group of nine California students with the help of the activist group Students Matter won an amazing victory in California Superior Court in the case of Vergara v. California.As I reported at the time:

    Judge Rolf M. Treu reasoned that the challenged teacher rules—regarding permanent employment status, dismissal procedures, and a "last in first out" rule for layoffs—do indeed damage California children's constitutional right (on the state level) to an education. He wrote that the challenged statutes "cause the potential and/or unreasonable exposure of grossly ineffective teachers to all California students" and "to minority and/or low income students in particular, in violation of the equal protection clause of the California constitution."

    Naturally, the losers appealed, and Judge Treu stayed actual enforcement of his ruling pending appeal. Today, the Students Matter side filed their brief in the appeal process in the Court of Appeal for California, 2nd appellate district....In a press conference call this morning announcing the brief, lawyers on the Students Matter side say they still need to wait for the teachers side to file its response brief and then await an actual court date. Once the hearings are over, though, a decision must come within 90 days, but that could still be a very long time away--more's the pity for California public school students.". There's a decent video that's posted on the page.

  • The Norway Chess Tournament 2015 ended with victory for Topalov. The tournament was marred by some blunders and a short draw between Anand and Topalov in the final round. But most newsworthy is what Chessbase reports here,"...this is easily the worst tournament ever played by Carlsen after obtaining his GM strength."
  • The 43rd Sparkassen Chess Meeting Dortmund 2015 has begun; it features players such as Kramnik, So, Hou Yifan, Naiditsch.
  • American chess lost an icon recently. The NY Times has a piece on Walter Browne who passed away in Las Vegas at the age of 66.
  • Michael Krieger posts on "Salt “Black Markets” Emerge in Indiana School System as Students Seek to Avoid Bland Michelle Obama Lunches"

Resource: SymPy Gamma


It's not considered important enough to be implemented in Sage but I think every teacher sees the educational value if Sage were able to show the steps of its calculations. SymPy Gamma shows how it could be implemented for (some) derivative and integration problems. I've typed in the command integrate(ln(x)) which results in the screenshot above (where it annoyingly writes ln(x) as log(x)). In addition to that information it plots the graph of the solution and even finds the root.


But the explanation for how it got the answer was most impressive:


The main problem is that there were plenty of times in my experimentation that the steps weren't given--as I said already, it shows the solution for some problems. Before you rush out and try it I need to mention I that while most of the output is provided quickly, some of the information (usually the plot) can take a lot more time to show up-maybe a minute or so. And sometimes it just "times out" without giving all the output. So if you're willing to put together problems that result in a solution you've got a great teaching tool for calculus. I've added SymPy Gamma to the links on sidebar.

Here are some issues that caught my eye this week:

  • There's growing opposition to the growing budget for police protection in Los Angeles schools. Southern California Radio has the story: "Superintendent Ramon Cortines proposed growing the school police budget by about $2 million, bringing the department's total funding to $59 million for the 2015-2016 school year. The district runs the largest school police department in the country with more than 350 officers. The armed staff supervise students who walk to and from school under a safe passage program and perform other duties related to campus security....Last fall, school police estimated they would need 80 new officers to protect students walking home from school with iPads. The department later retracted the statement....Students living in communities such as Watts are more likely to feel harassed than protected by police, according to Ruth Cusick, an attorney for Public Counsel, a legal advocacy group....The school police department drew scrutiny last fall after reports that it owned an armored tank, grenade launchers and more than 60 assault rifles from the military surplus program. The district later returned some of the weapons.". While police protection sounds great, the harassment mentioned above hearkens back to 2012 when police were issuing citations to kids as young as 6 for fighting and, for example, "...two boys who were stopped by officers near their school, minutes late, and were searched, handcuffed and allegedly intimidated inside a squad car before officers took them into school and wrote them curfew tickets.". As covered in more detail here, "Students at schools with some of the highest dropout rates have reported staying home if they were running late — rather than risk meeting up with police and getting tickets that can rise to $400 once court fees are tacked on.". The vote on the budget is set for Tuesday.
  • Connie St Louis, one of the women who led the campaign to oust Tim Hunt from his job explains her side of the story to Scientific American. Her agenda goes even deeper: "I didn’t just call out Hunt in that first tweet, however, but also the Royal Society, the U.K.’s national academy of science, where he is a fellow. Sexual inequality in the STEM fields continues in part because the Society continues to take very little action....I felt it would be a waste if the uproar ignored the forest for trees—rebuking only Hunt and not higher orders of power as well—so my next action was to present a framework for systemic change:...The Royal Society was founded in 1660 there has never been a female president, so I went to and set up a petition called, “Its time to elect a female president to lead the Royal Society.” So far there have been only 68 signatures .... Condemning one mans’ sexist remarks is not enough. It is important that this episode also affects change for women in science.". Racism and sexism will always exist--but is the playing field so unfair when the targeted group can bully the system to remove a former Nobel Prize winner and use that issue to push for a female president of the Royal Society? It seems like "the system" is on her side. Indeed, in her own article (link above) she recalls a "disturbing" dream where she's confronted by reporters: "They are all shouting the same question: “How did you think you would get a way with publically calling to account a prominent white male scientist?”". No such problem in the real world.
  • In an earlier post, Jerry Seinfeld expressed his displeasure with the extreme PC environment on college campuses. A college student wrote in to Huffington Post to explain comedy to Jerry Seinfeld. Comedian Bill Maher takes aim at these 'idiots' and dispenses his verbal beat down of the college student as only a comedian could. It can make you laugh or maybe it will offend you--view at your own discretion.
  • LA Times reports on a "nationally recognized" teacher who was removed from his post for reading a passage from Mark Twain's book "The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn". The PC climate, again. Great literature forces can force you confront some uncomfortable questions whether it's "Lord of the Flies", "1984", "To Kill a Mockingbird" and other numerous books that are targeted for banning. The American Library Association's website notes "Each year, the ALA's Office for Intellectual Freedom records hundreds of attempts by individuals and groups to have books removed from libraries shelves and from classrooms.". How many of those classic books have you read?
  • The French government is warning it's citizens about the US attitudes/culture. From the article,"Along with warnings about slower speed limits, higher drinking ages and hurricanes in Texas, the French foreign ministry adds a note of warning against being too “Latin.”“It’s recommended to adopt a reserved attitude toward those of the opposite sex,” it says. “Comments, behavior, and jokes, which might be harmless in Latin countries, can lead to criminal cases,” the ministry’s website says....Reinforcing French views of American prudishness, the website notes that even minors can be accused of sexual harassment, and asks that children use toilets reserved for their sex in the U.S....Among other advice to the French in America: “keep calm in all circumstances” since some states authorize the carrying of weapons. It asks visitors to avoid raising their voice or making sudden or aggressive gestures at the police."
  • With 4 out of 9 rounds down, the Norway Chess Classic 2015 is drawing attention for Carlsen's poor showing. As Chessbase notes, "This disaster, however, is simply unprecedented.". Round 1 started with magnificent play by Magnus to achieve a winning position. But he lost on time because he didn't know the time control for the tournament(!!!). It's been downhill from there. He was outplayed by Caruana and Anand. You can follow the games at the tournament site here.
  • The Daily Caller reports on the "fiasco" while implementing Common Core in Nevada: "Under No Child Left Behind, states are supposed to test children in grades 3-8 each year in mathematics and reading. At least 95 percent of students must take the tests, or else a state can face federal sanctions such as a loss of millions of dollars in funds. Nevada, on the other hand, was only able to test 37 percent of the 213,000 students it was supposed to, thanks to a cascade of glitches and computer problems that left students unable to complete their exams. In Clark County, which contains the Las Vegas metro area and over half the state’s students, only 5 percent were successfully tested. Because so few were tested, Nevada’s department of education says it will be unable to issue grades for individual schools based on performance, like it is supposed to. The failure means Nevada is at risk of losing millions in federal funding, but such sanctions are unlikely in this case because the state made an honest effort that simply undone by technical shortfalls.". There is, of course, a scramble to assign blame.
  • WND has a piece on author Alex Newman calling for a debate with Huffington Post writer "...Rebecca Klein over her June 4 article, “5 of the Most Extreme Claims Made Against Common Core In The Last 5 Years.”One of her claims was Newman’s contention in March 2014 that Common Core was part of a global agenda to “transform American children, and students around the globe, into what globalists refer to as ‘global citizens’ ready for the coming ‘green’ and ‘sustainable’ world order.” He is asking for her to investigate the claim for herself. For example, in a 2010 speech at the Sustainability Summit, Duncan bragged that his Education Department was “taking a leadership role in the work of educating the next generation of green citizens and preparing them to contribute to the workforce through green jobs.” In a separate 2010 speech given to UNESCO, Duncan proclaimed the U.S. must partner with foreign countries to tackle global challenges. Newman also addressed another one of Klein’s five “extreme” claims: that Common Core will turn kids into communists and/or socialists. She accused Glenn Beck and Rep. Jim Bridenstine, R-Okla., of making those assertions. However, as Newman pointed out, that’s not exactly what Beck and Bridenstine said." . Two very different perspectives that should give a lively debate. Will she rise to the challenge or give the other side "bragging rights" by refusing. Stay tuned!