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Feb 9, 2017

Mathematics is one of the foundations of education, with some people being inclined towards(1) it, and others finding it quite difficult. My sons seem to have a natural ability, including my youngest, Robert, who is in middle school. He has just started an online Algebra 1 course. Even though they do offer Algebra 1 in his school, he missed the admittance grade by one point. He was so disappointed, as he knew that he was capable of learning Algebra. As he had expressed his disappointment to me several times, I asked him if he would like to sign up for a course. "You will have to do the work at home, right? You do realize(2) that it's your responsibility?" I asked him. He answered "yes" to all of my questions, so before I knew it, I had found a recommended site, paid, and received the curriculum. "Things are certainly different nowadays," I thought to myself. And it's true; our children have so many options that weren't available when I was young(3). At the High School meeting I went to recently, the principal showed us that many new and exciting classes have been added to those that are offered. For half the day, if Robert qualifies, he could actually go to a technical center to study robotics. In this place, called The Tech Center, students can also do cooking, mechanics, crime science, and even work towards becoming a firefighter! Back at the regular High School, they have added classes like mixing electronic music, and 20th century pop culture. It seems like school could actually be a lot of fun. I suppose the world has changed radically, and in this era of technology and entertainment, the next generation needs to be prepared to qualify for many of the jobs that will be available.

1. 'To be inclined to/towards' meaning to lean towards, to have a tendency, or a willingness to.

a. I am inclined to agree with what you say.

b. As she criticizes him all the time, he is inclined to stay quiet.

c. He inclined his head towards the people sitting at the table next to him so he could hear what they were saying.

 2. 'You do realize...?" in English we emphasize the word 'do' as a way of looking for affirmation or a response. It is similar to saying, "I hope you realize that...". It sounds like a statement, but it can end with a question mark.

a. They do realize that they have to pay for their food and lodging if they stay?

b. You do realize that we will miss the bus if we don't leave now?

 3. Our children have so many options that weren't available when I was young.  What a sentence! Anyone could use a sentence like this, and if you happen to be young, you could slightly adjust it to fit what you want to say.

a. Our university has so many class choices that weren't available for my parents.

b. There are so many civil rights now that weren't in place when my grandparents were young.

c. There are so many laws that protect the environment that didn't exist when I was young.