[Rescued from my old blog.]
Eldest dd had her first calculus lesson last night: derivatives. The teacher found the speed of a car at a given point by using the distance function, calculating the average speed over shorter and shorter time intervals. Dd summarized the lesson for me:
“If you want to divide by zero, you have to sneak up on it from behind.”
Of course, she understands you can’t really divide by zero, but I thought her tongue-in-cheek comment was a pretty good description of the process of finding the limit as delta-t approached zero.