This action might not be possible to undo. Are you sure you want to continue?
My name is Professor Stoddard and I'll be teaching your first semester of college math at the University of Expanded Knowledge, Advanced Learning, and Enrichment Studies. I possess absolutely no qualifications in this subject, but, since our country's experiencing a huge teacher shortage and I need some extra cash, I'm here to introduce you to the less-thanthrilling world of numbers. You know, like one, two, fortyfive, a trillion, five-hundred, and a kajillion. The next witch--I mean, knowledgeable instructor--is Professor Higgins. She's actually a qualified math teacher, which is why she'll teach your second semester. (Of course, only you math and science majors will have to take the next course; you arts and humanities kids luck out and drop math altogether by Christmas). Professor Higgins will teach you about parabolas, integers, graphing calculators, and a bunch of other things most of you will hate. I'll teach you about how real people with real lives--not engineers and other nerdy types--use math. You're probably wondering how much that really is. The truth is: not much more than a dog reads Tolstoy. If you're afraid that I'm taking too basic of an approach to math and that your parents are shelling out thousands so you can review
second grade arithmetic, you're right. But my philosophy is that you're better off filling your heads with information that matters to you. And I know for a fact that logarithms don't matter to 99% of you. All you extra-inquisitive types will research whatever I don't explain, and the rest of you will rely on accountants, calculators, and Wikipedia for the rest of your lives. Now that I've given you that spiel, my handsome Latin assistant, Ricardo Moreno, will pass out the syllabus. He's sporting his booty shorts for this very occasion. If he skips over you, please be sure to spank him three times, just like this: one, two, three! Now, let's say it all together: one, two, three! Good, we just completed our first math lesson. Remember to write this down: counting to three will appear on our first quiz, which will occur sometime between now and the end of the semester. Do you all have syllabi now? Excellent. Skim over this useless piece of paper sometime and come to me with any questions. I'll then direct you to the T.A.s who have no idea what's going on. Actually, that's our next exercise: how many T.A.s do we have? Let's count together: one, six, eleven, fifty! Just kidding. Again: one, two, three, four! Nice. A's for everybody. The T.A.s don't have names, just numbers, so don't bother asking about that. Okay, moving on to our next several exercises, which all involve M&M®s. This part's a tad more complicated, so
forgive me if I'm going too fast. At the back of the classroom, there are enough M&M® bags for all of you to have one. Please get up now, form an orderly line, pick up a paper towel, and don't be a hog. I'll quickly know if you grabbed more than one bag. That's the beauty of being able to count! Does everyone have a bag now? Good. Now sit down. Stretch the paper towel out in front of you and dump out all of your M&M®s onto the paper towel. Why don't you count them? The first one to tell me how many M&M®s you have wins a prize. I'm timing you beginning...now. You have, say, twenty minutes. I'm due for a coffee break. [Half an hour later.] Hey, folks! I'm back. Tick-tock. Tick-tock. Tick-tock. Bam! You, in the third row! How many M&M®s? Thirty-seven? Nope. Sorry. You in the fourth row? Forty-two? Naw. You, over there. Forty-four and a half! Bingo! All of you should have forty-four and a half M&M®s. Please observe. I am picking up an M&M® and splitting it in two. Now I have two halves. One half plus one half equals one whole. And that's our first lesson in fractions. For the next exercise, we will briefly explore the world of algebra. I recognize I'm stretching you here. Just put on your Thinking Caps and burn a hole through them with brain steam. Let's pretend--art and English majors, I know
you're good at this--that all of the blue M&M®s are worth one. Art majors, please show the science majors what a blue M&M® looks like. F.Y.I. They'll probably need help identifying the other colors, too. Okay, the green ones represent-Aww, shucks! Class time's up, isn't it? Alright, see you all on Friday. Hey, wait--no, I have a conference that day. See you Monday. Enjoy your weekend! No homework.