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At a Glance - Proofs

The proof. The most petrifying aspect of geometry.

It may instigate fear, anxiety, and terrible flashbacks of when Barry Meanbottom, the second-grade class jerk, said you didn't know how to swim. Not wanting the other kids to laugh, you of course openly declared that you could. "Prove it," Barry had said with a sneer. Even as you jumped that diving board you knew you were doomed. To this day, you still have anxiety attacks around proofs and swimming pools.

Well, unlike Barry Meanbottom, geometry won't ever ask you to prove something you don't have the skills to prove. Sure, it might make you analyze what you already know and synthesize new information to make the proof work, but it's not a jerk. It'll make sure you have all the tools to swim and not sink. (That's a metaphor. We can't do anything about your actual swimming skills.)

And unlike Barry's father, big-time corporate insurance lawyer Mr. Meanbottom, geometry won't ever make you prove something that isn't true. The proofs you'll write won't be fabricated evidence presented to a gullible (and probably tampered) jury.

Instead, you'll work through factual proofs using logical arguments and arrive at reasonable conclusions that could convince any judge and more importantly, your math teacher.

The bottom line is that proofs aren't as bad as most people think they are, and all because geometry is nothing like the Meanbottoms.

Here's a video on one kind of proof.

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