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Exponents to memorize

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Exponents to memorize [#permalink]

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New post 12 Oct 2016, 15:44
I am looking for a good list of common exponents to memorize s/a (4^3, 15^2, 5^3, etc.)
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Re: Exponents to memorize [#permalink]

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New post 12 Oct 2016, 16:59
Hi kmathieu,

While it can be quite helpful to have certain types of numbers memorized (re: fraction-to-decimal conversions, perfect squares, etc.), it's far more useful to be able to do basic arithmetic by hand (correctly and quickly). How strong are your skills in that area - are you comfortable adding, subtracting, multiplying and dividing (without a calculator)?

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Re: Exponents to memorize [#permalink]

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I'm not a huge fan of any kind of memorization. However, if you can memorize a few important powers, then you'll be able to identify useful problem-solving approaches if you recognize certain powers.
Consider an example where we must solve an equation for x: 27^x = 81^(x-1)
If we're able to recognize that we can rewrite both 27 and 81 as powers of 3, then we're well on our way to solving the equation.
However, without having memorized 3^3 = 27 and 3^4 = 81, you may have difficulty answering the question (even if your addition/multiplication skills are excellent)

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Re: Exponents to memorize [#permalink]

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kmathieu wrote:
I am looking for a good list of common exponents to memorize s/a (4^3, 15^2, 5^3, etc.)


Here are the exponents I suggest to my students (with some overlap):

Squares till 20:
2^2, 3^2, ..., 20^2

Cubes till 10:
2^3, 3^3, 4^3, ... 9^3, 10^3

Fourth powers till 5:
2^4, 3^4, 4^4, 5^4

Fifth powers till 4:
2^5, 3^5, 4^5

Exponents of 2 from 2^2 to 2^10.
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Re: Exponents to memorize   [#permalink] 24 Jan 2018, 03:41
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