Using letters when learning about algebra may seem very strange. But at least there are no new numbers to learn every year, whereas new words evolve all the time. Sometimes over 1000 words can be added to a dictionary in a year!
The Oxford English dictionary is probably the most reliable, and is updated 4 times a year. If a word becomes popular, for example slang and abbreviations, and is used a lot, then it is considered by researchers. It can take years for it to appear in the dictionary though. It took almost 50 years, starting in 1879, for Oxford to complete their first dictionary. They massively underestimated how long it would take, originally thinking it would be complete in 10 years. However, it was 5 years before they even got to the word “ant”. Imagine having that job – it certainly makes algebra seem a lot easier!!
Just imagine a word – make it popular – and it could make it into the dictionary!!!
Try out Part 4 of our “How to” Algebra guides. This week covers factorising quadratics, which means “putting it into 2 brackets”. This guide will show you methods of factorising when ‘a’ = 1, and when ‘a’ is not 1 (which is a bit trickier!). It will also take you through how to solve quadratic equations after factorising them. There are some example questions for you to measure your progress. Answers are also provided for you to check your understanding.
Click on the picture below to view our guide.
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