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"Calculators are instrumental as an investigative tool in the teaching and learning of mathematics to enhance students’ conceptual understanding. The graphing calculator should be used for all types of classroom activities and homework..." This is in regards to teaching algebra, geometry, and trig.

I'm interested in knowing your opinions on this. I agree that graphing calculators can be used as an investigative tool in algebra (i.e. examining parabolas in the form y=ax^2 and seeing what happens as the value of a is varied.) However, I've long felt that the reliance on calculators prevents many students from learning some of the important concepts/skills. ('Why bother learning how to do something by hand, if a calculator can do it for you?' seems to be their reasoning.)

I'm experimenting with a calculus class this year. Other than showing that a calculator can find the value of a derivative at a point, and can approximate a definite integral, we're avoiding calculators.

I'm interested in your opinions on the use of calculators in high school math classes. (Please note in your opinion where your opinion is coming from - student? teacher? engineer?)

Thanks!