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 Apr12 comment High school math definition of a variable: the first step from the concrete into the abstract… @RossMillikan Variables that won't vary, or constants that aren't constant, sounds like contradictions that is not contradictory, or oxymorons that aren't oxymoronic. Apr12 revised High school math definition of a variable: the first step from the concrete into the abstract… even more descriptive title Apr11 revised High school math definition of a variable: the first step from the concrete into the abstract… more descriptive title Apr11 revised High school math definition of a variable: the first step from the concrete into the abstract… deleted 1 characters in body Apr10 revised High school math definition of a variable: the first step from the concrete into the abstract… add a link Apr6 revised High school math definition of a variable: the first step from the concrete into the abstract… added 548 characters in body Apr6 comment High school math definition of a variable: the first step from the concrete into the abstract… Thank you I appreciate your response to my question. The variable, x, in the quadratic equation represents a parabola when it "varies" over a given domain. But the variable in the equation $0 = x^2 + 2x + 1$ is, as you said "an unknown quantity. It does not vary." Yet in both situations they are referred to as a variable, and this duality is embodied in the definition of a variable as "a symbol used to represent one or more numbers." Could the motivation behind this definition be such that we don't have to make the distinction between an "unknown specific quantity" and a "varying" quantity? Apr6 asked High school math definition of a variable: the first step from the concrete into the abstract… Apr5 comment Factor $14x^2 - 17x + 5$. @TheChaz How do the "issues" you mentioned at the beginning of your answer relate to the quickness and time saving value of the trial and error method? (Provided that students are taught a systematic method.) Apr5 comment Factor $14x^2 - 17x + 5$. I appreciate your comments. Doesn't the trial and error method make you appreciate the group and factor method? Some, who are practiced with the trial and error method, can quickly "see" the factored form. They run through the combinations of factors of the a and c terms and find the factors of the trinomial. They actually prefer this method, and only use the group and factor method when they get stuck. It saves them time. Thanks for the comments. Mar29 revised Factor $14x^2 - 17x + 5$. deleted 1 characters in body Mar29 revised Factor $14x^2 - 17x + 5$. added 215 characters in body Mar29 awarded Editor Mar29 revised Factor $14x^2 - 17x + 5$. added 80 characters in body Mar29 awarded Teacher Mar29 answered Factor $14x^2 - 17x + 5$. Mar24 awarded Supporter Mar24 awarded Scholar Mar24 accepted Factor $14x^2 - 17x + 5$. Mar23 comment How many sides does a circle have? I'm not defending the teachers answer, but you can have a one sided argument if you talk in circles, therefore a circle has one side.