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It all depends on the background (i.e. the axiomatic assumtions your students are able to cope with). I recevied, in 1973, my trigonomtry in the same order, but at the time I was already quite familar with the right triangle geomerty. My father, who studied trigonometry for surveing purpose, not mathematics, did recived it after an introduction to ...


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I disagree with the notion that the unit circle approach preceding the triangle approach should be, if it is contextualized historically, "baffling." To this end, I suggest two pieces if you are wondering about how the unit circle gets itself into the pedagogical broaching of a subject that etymologically appears to be the study of triangles/three sided ...


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I find it easier to think about a single number (x or y of unit circle) than a ratio. Also helpful with angles greater than 180 or negative. I learned it this way back in the early 80s...so it's not like some totally new fangled approach. Just because it seems strange to you or you get some agreement on this message board, doesn't validate your opinion....


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I've noticed this trend as well, and it's baffling. The only justification I can see for it is that one of the main topics in precalculus is "functions," so they introduce the sine and cosine functions first. Then they say "Hey, guess what, these apply to triangles." However, this strikes me as being completely backward: they should introduce the sine ...


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