“When am I ever gonna use this?” As an eighth-grade algebra teacher, I hear this refrain at least once a week. It’s a difficult question to answer. I mean, when is the last time that your employer asked you to factor a polynomial or prove two polygons congruent? The truth is that most of us will never use the myriad of math facts and algorithms in our post-school lives. However, that does not mean that math does not have some valuable lessons for us. The following are lessons that can be learned in an algebra classroom and applied in your life. No calculator required.

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