The language of physics is mathematics. In order to study physics seriously, one needs to learn mathematics that took generations of brilliant people centuries to work out. Algebra, for example, was cutting-edge mathematics when it was being developed in Baghdad in the 9th century.

But today it's just the first step along the journey.

Algebra provides the first exposure to the use of variables and constants, and experience manipulating and solving linear equations of the form y = ax + b and quadratic equations of the form y = ax2+bx+c.