Homework

Everybody always says school is harder than when we were kids. Just for fun, I tested that theory. I tried to do my some of son’s high school homework.

English Literature:

Be prepared to discuss Book 89, 795-1045, of Milton’s “Paradise Lost” and look at Eve’s dilemma of giving Adam knowledge as well as Adam’s willful falling into temptation.

Wait, it this really appropriate subject matter for 16-year-olds?

Spanish 3:

¿Que hiciste el fin de semana pasado?

I’m sorry, I took French in high school.

Honors Chemistry:

Find the molar masses of these substances.

A “molar mass” — is that like something that gets stuck in your teeth? Then the answer would be “Jolly Rancher.”

American History:

Hey, look at that, no homework! But I need to be prepared for the test on Friday, which will cover the Roaring ’20s in terms of isolationism, immigration restrictions, Prohibition, crime, consumerism, new technological innovations, cultural and racial transitions and literary reactions.

Whew! But wait, there’s more!

The test will also cover Warren G. Harding and political corruption in the 1920s, Calvin Coolidge and the unraveling of the debt knot, Herbert Hoover’s vain effort to halt the onset of the Great Depression, Franklin D. Roosevelt and the rollout of the New Deal, The New Deal’s effect on banking, job relief, farm relief, housing relief, long-range recovery programs and plans for reform.

I remember that Hoover has a dam named after him. Can I get partial credit for that?

Algebra II:

Find the inverse of this function: f (x) = −x + 1

Wasn’t there a “School House Rock” song about this? “Conjunction Junction, what’s your function?” Oh wait, different kind of function. I have no idea how to

do this.

Luckily, kids these days have lots of online resources like Khan Academy to help with math homework.

“Inverse functions, in the most general sense, are functions that ‘reverse’ each other. Consider that the equation C = 5/9 (F − 32) can be used to convert the temperature in degrees Fahrenheit to a temperature in degrees Celsius. But suppose we wanted an equation that did the reverse — that converted a temperature in degrees Celsius to a temperature in degrees Fahrenheit. Then you would need to find the inverse of that function.”

Or you could just type “45 C to F” into Google and go get a snack.

Lisa Davis is Features Editor of The Anniston Star. Contact her at 256-235-3555 or ldavis@annistonstar.com.

Features Editor Lisa Davis: 256-235-3555.

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