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Convoluting Math - Betraying Our Children's Future
Maggie's Notebook ^ | 7-27-12 | Maggie@MaggiesNotebook

Posted on 07/28/2012 9:38:35 AM PDT by maggiesnotebook

More woeful elementary core curriculum education news from the state of Oklahoma, and specifically in Tulsa and surrounding areas. Headline: Elementary Test Results Dip, and they have dipped "to the lowest rates in years." The good news is, about 24 years ago, Tulsa schools took 6th graders out of elementary schools and moved them into what was transitioning from Junior High School to Middle School. That bright idea is apparently now being corrected and 6th graders are moving back to elementary school where they are better served. The fact is, students across the nation are failing in mathematics and science. Many High School graduates are put in remedial reading classes so they can qualify for college. Appalling. We have convoluted math to the extreme. Our education system continues to be in crisis as we pour billions and billions of dollars into teaching and administration. With half my brain tied behind my back, I know that funding is not the problem. The article and video below will raise your eyebrows, give you a migraine and if you care about your child's future, you will be madder than heck. It's one of the most important pieces I have read on education, other than Kevin Jennings moving out of Obama's Safe Schools Czar office. Please pass this to family and especially to parents who are dismayed at their child's lack of interest in mathematics.

The district's overall fourth-grade reading proficiency rate fell 10 percentage points to 42, and third-grade math is down 9 points to just 48 percent overall. Moderate losses were seen at the fifth-grade level, with math and reading proficiency down 6 and 5 points respectively to 52 percent and 49 percent overall.

Sixth-graders improved three points in both math and reading, to 54 and 53 percent, respectively. Source: Tulsa World

The New Math

by Grumpy at Grumpy Opinions

Years ago when I got out of the service unemployment was high, and no one really wanted Vets, the general assumption was we were all crazy– a slight exaggeration.  The construction industry was a little different, cray was normal and it paid well, provided you were willing to get paid for what you produced, instead of the time you put in…   The only problem was you were on your own for things like insurance, and the winters were rough on cash flow.   That was when I started learning there was more money in selling the materials, then there was in nailing it together..

A couple years later I was managing a lumber yard.  One evening I wrote a guy up for 160 feet of baseboard molding, and set him to the kid in back to get loaded up.. and went back to what I was doing..  A couple minutes later the came to and asked how many pieces he should give the customer.  The kid was eighteen and had graduated from High School less than a month before..

I looked at him and said ” You’ve got sixteen footers back there, the stuff’s in ten piece bundles, the customer has a racks on his truck, so sixteens are fine.

The pride of the local school system just stood there for a full minute looking at me, then he said “Yeah, but how many pieces do I give him?”

I had to explain to this kid, who had just Graduated High School that ten times sixteen equaled 160-

Over the years I’ve heard people complain about the lack of very basic skills kids have when they finish High School.  Educators have demanded and gotten more money, smaller class sizes and the latest and greatest in modern educational tools.  The result is a lower quality finished product than we had fifty years and hundreds of billions of ago.  Now we’ve gotten to the point that everyone is blaming everyone, the parents blame the schools and the teachers,  In turn the schools and the teachers blame the parents.

Every year the experts come up with a new solution, but it will cost money.  Somehow the experts don’t get blamed– they just get more money out of the deal.. Before we go any farther, take a look at the video.. The narrator gets much better as she gets into her subject, she’s not so good at first.

Explaining New Math, no - really (video) I’m not so sure if I’d have been able to solve a simple multiplication problem if I’d been taught bu any of those methods.  However that’s what the experts say works.. at least while they’re selling the school districts new curriculum models, and very expensive books to go with them.

I sat my almost eleven year old grandson down and we watched the video together, he’s been taught everyone of the algorithms except the lattice method.. Then he laughed a little..

He told me last year as Florida’s FCAT  Testing Season was approaching his teacher was having a really hard time getting her students to understand the clusters, thingamajigs and whatever’s the new math calls for..  She was getting desperate.  Finally she said “Screw this”, and started erasing  everything on the black board.

Then she said.. “You don’t have to show your work on the FCAT, let me show you how to do this stuff right.  It didn’t take long for the class to figure it out, when it was taught the way it had been for generations.. before the experts made it better.


TOPICS: Education; Government; Politics; Society
KEYWORDS: children; education; newmath; schools

1 posted on 07/28/2012 9:38:49 AM PDT by maggiesnotebook
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To: maggiesnotebook

Several years ago...I lived in Germany and was watching this TV show where businesses were inviting seventeen year-old kids out for job interviews. These all related simple jobs in bakeries, groceries, and beverage shops.

The bosses all had this ten question test that they used on the kids that showed up. They were questions like....if you only had half of three hours to do a job...how many minutes did this add up to? Nine of ten kids could not answer the question. One kid sat there for at least three minutes...finally converting the hours into minutes and coming to the answer of 120 minutes (wrong, I know).

So the bosses all turned to the reporter doing the piece, and said....these are all kids finishing up years in school, and ought to be able to do simple math. The simple truth was that they just couldn’t think and operate with common problems and math. If you had just said what was 180 minus 90...they’d all answer that quickly. They weren’t prepared for the real world.

I suspect that American educators are discovering the same thing. The answer here...is to start every kid by the third grade....doing business math applications on a routine basis. Sprinkle in geometric situations, and various other calculations. Math alone, is not enough....you need to think and use it in everyday life.


2 posted on 07/28/2012 9:49:56 AM PDT by pepsionice
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To: maggiesnotebook

Is there a link to the video, or did I miss something?


3 posted on 07/28/2012 9:54:05 AM PDT by upchuck ("Definition of 'racist:' someone that is winning an argument with a liberal." ~ Peter Brimelow)
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To: maggiesnotebook

The emphasis on math and science is the beginning of what is wrong. Those are just two forms of materialism that don’t develop thinking. We need to go back to the pre-Dewey methods of education, that emphasised reading and writing. I find it disturbing that every day on FR there are intelligent people who cannot make the plural of a noun correctly - it means that even though they see it written correctly in books and the media, it doesn’t sink in, because they don’t understand the rules of spelling and grammar that are - or should be - taught in third grade. (But apparently are not).


4 posted on 07/28/2012 10:15:15 AM PDT by kabumpo (Kabumpo)
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To: kabumpo
The emphasis on math and science is the beginning of what is wrong. Those are just two forms of materialism that don’t develop thinking. We need to go back to the pre-Dewey methods of education, that emphasised reading and writing. I find it disturbing that every day on FR there are intelligent people who cannot make the plural of a noun correctly - it means that even though they see it written correctly in books and the media, it doesn’t sink in, because they don’t understand the rules of spelling and grammar that are - or should be - taught in third grade. (But apparently are not).

As I recall it was reading, writin and arithmetic.

And yes I know they are misspelled.

I have noted that most people that teach reading and writing have trouble dealing with simple ratios and percentages. And I don't see how emphasizing what you mention is going to help with peoples ability with math and science which are very important part of this complex society.

I don't disagree that what you say is important, just that you left out a very important cog.

5 posted on 07/28/2012 10:44:15 AM PDT by billva
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To: upchuck

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Tr1qee-bTZI&feature=player_embedded

video - seen it before - it’s astounding how they are teaching math...


6 posted on 07/28/2012 10:45:31 AM PDT by raybbr (People who still support Obama are either a Marxist or a moron.)
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To: maggiesnotebook; wintertime

This looks like a thread for WINTERTIME!!! (part of the title of one of my favorite songs, by The Fenestrations [Doors, for those of you in Rio Linda]).

Anyone on this site that still trusts the DRUGGIE, SEX-CRAZED, Ed School college graduates to teach their kids reading and math (i.e., public school teachers), might just as well have the neighborhood pedophile drive their kids home from school (and one can reasonably argue that the pedophile would be more interested in the kid’s success than one of those Marxists, posing as teachers).


7 posted on 07/28/2012 10:49:23 AM PDT by BobL
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To: raybbr

That video is close to going viral. If it did, MILLIONS of parents would WAKE UP to just what these schools are doing to their kids.

But, for now, they still live in their own dream world.


8 posted on 07/28/2012 10:52:07 AM PDT by BobL
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To: pepsionice

That was my first thought, too. Students are always asking, “When am I ever going to need to know this?” Math should be taught using real world applications.

Then again, math textbooks already include word problems - for real-life situations. Maybe the real reason is that students are held to standards that are too low.


9 posted on 07/28/2012 11:08:24 AM PDT by Tired of Taxes
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To: maggiesnotebook

The problem with American K-12 education is that almost every one of the several states has granted a monopoly on producing “qualified” or “certified” teachers to colleges of education. Colleges of education have been a bastion of stupid, left-leaning ideas since the time of John Dewey (remember he called his ideas “Progressive Education”) and got worse with the importation of Vygotsky’s ideas (”social construction of knowledge”) from the Soviet Union.

Mostly their pedagogical ideas (hands on learning, group work, exploration leanring, ‘look-say’, . . .) would work as nice add-ons to straight-up old fashioned 19th-century-American or early-to-mid-20th-century-British-style education, but are absolute disasters when substituted for actually learning facts, phonics, standard arithmetic algorithms and the like. Their ideas of using schools for anything other than education (building self-esteem — which incidentally is a vice — providing social services, psychological services and the like) are actively harmful.

In mathematics (my own area), another problem is that optimal education takes more time than we’re willing as a society to devote to it, and requires teachers from the early grades on who actually understand mathematics (instead of the math-phobic ditzes who constitute 85% of the population of ed majors). Ideally, each topic should begin with a bit of exploration (this really requires the teacher to know mathematics well), then proceed to teach the facts or standard algorithm *with an explanation of why it works* and ideally *why it is superior to what the student came up with while exploring*, then have a fair bit of rote drill, followed by applying the topic to something interesting (again probably requiring a mathematically or scientifically savvy teacher). If we have to leave any of that out for time considerations, the initial exploration goes first, followed by cutting down the amount of rote drill a bit.

Of course, the Vygotskians want to keep the exploration part, and eliminate the rote drill entirely, and an awful lot of elementary ed majors aren’t competent to lead the exploration, explain why the algorithms work, or recognize why or whether the standard algorithm is superior to what a bright student came up with on his or her own.

We need a handful of right-leaning states to upset the “progressive” status quo by breaking the college of ed monopoly, setting up rigorous math, science, literacy, American and world history and civics standards, howls from the education establishment be damned. Oklahoma seems like a good place to start.


10 posted on 07/28/2012 11:11:23 AM PDT by The_Reader_David (And when they behead your own people in the wars which are to come, then you will know. . .)
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To: maggiesnotebook

My wife is a teacher educator. Many of her students headed for elementary schools, “hate” math and/or are “afraid of math”. When they come to her classroom that is. Not so much when they leave. She’s the math specialist in her small department (and the chair too). She changed the requirements so that those headed for middle or high school also must take “teaching elementary math”, so that if, as happens too often, the kids come to them deficient or “hating” or “afraid”, they can figure out what went wrong earlier, and fix it.

She’s only one teacher educator, in a small program. But when I think of how many kids are not exposed to a teacher in elementary school who can’t do, “hates” or “is afraid of” math because of her efforts, plus those who where her elementary students when she was in the public school classrom, the numbers get rather large. Still just a drop in the bucket, but still quite a legacy to have.


11 posted on 07/28/2012 11:17:00 AM PDT by El Gato ("The second amendment is the reset button of the US constitution"-Doug McKay)
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To: billva

You misunderstood what I wrote, and possibly cannot understand the very idea - without reading comprehension, which takes a lot of reading and a lot of training - the students don’t learn how to think. You make my case for me


12 posted on 07/28/2012 11:22:46 AM PDT by kabumpo (Kabumpo)
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To: raybbr

Thanks. I have also seen it before but now I have it bookmarked.


13 posted on 07/28/2012 11:36:23 AM PDT by upchuck ("Definition of 'racist:' someone that is winning an argument with a liberal." ~ Peter Brimelow)
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To: The_Reader_David

I remember (its been some years ago) reading a book by Thomas Sowell about education in this country. His first idea for helping to create more competent teachers was to eliminate the Bachelor’s degree in Education. Basically, you get a Bachelor’s degree in something like Math, Computer Science, History, etc. Then, you get either a certificate or a Master’s degree in Education. He believed that this would improve the quality of teachers that are teaching our kids.


14 posted on 07/28/2012 11:47:23 AM PDT by LibertarianLiz
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To: raybbr
except 26*31 is NOT math... it's arithmetic
15 posted on 07/28/2012 1:07:23 PM PDT by Chode (American Hedonist - *DTOM* -ww- NO Pity for the LAZY)
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To: maggiesnotebook

mark


16 posted on 07/28/2012 1:12:58 PM PDT by JDoutrider
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To: Chode

Multiplication is a subset of math - so yes they are teaching math.


17 posted on 07/28/2012 1:18:33 PM PDT by raybbr (People who still support Obama are either a Marxist or a moron.)
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To: raybbr
and that subset is called arithmetic

math is what you learn after you know arithmetic

at least that is the way it was defined and taught when i went to school... but then again we learned times tables back then too

18 posted on 07/28/2012 1:56:43 PM PDT by Chode (American Hedonist - *DTOM* -ww- NO Pity for the LAZY)
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To: LibertarianLiz
I think Thomas Sowell would agree with me. The best way to improve education would be to close all of our government's socialist-entitlment school and privatize the entire process.

Modern government schooling was, since its inception in the mid-1800s, a **SOCIALIST entitlement. Nothing good can come from that. If they seemed to function somewhat well in previous decades it is due to the values of the teachers and principals in the system. For example, my father, born in 1913, was raised in a home with his grandparents. His grandfather served in the Civil War. By the 1970s this generation of teachers was retiring. They were the glue that held together an already crippled socialist system of schooling.

19 posted on 07/28/2012 2:50:45 PM PDT by wintertime (:-))
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To: BobL
What is needed first is fear of the Lord. “Education without values, as useful as it is, seems rather to make man a more clever devil.”― C.S. Lewis This is what Christians and conservatives do to their children when they send them into the government's godless socialist-entitlement K-12 schools. I hope they feel guilty. They should. And...Shame on any conservative or Christian teacher who cooperates with this godless system. If they were really "good" teachers who loved their students they would be warning the parents on a daily basis to get their kids OUT of these godless pits of socialist ignorance. They wouldn't be claiming that they are doing a good job and that their godless government school is "different". And...They would likely not last a year before being fired.
20 posted on 07/28/2012 3:02:38 PM PDT by wintertime (:-))
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To: Tired of Taxes

“That was my first thought, too. Students are always asking, “When am I ever going to need to know this?” Math should be taught using real world applications.”

I taught my kids reading in 2 months, before they turned 4 years old (it’s really, really, easy using traditional phonics). Once they learn to read, they use it every day of their lives and will NEVER question you again why they had to learn all those weird sounds.

Math, though, takes years (half a decade, roughly to get them ready for Calculus), and that’s doing it the traditional way (i.e., without calculators or pictures of Nelson Mandela). Kids will learn math, provided two things are done: 1) They are taught TRADITIONAL math, and (2) parents stick to it. But no, kids can get by quite well, most days of their lives without doing math, not to mention how easy it is to stay clear of Algebra and Trig. So, yea, they will question why they have to go through all that crap.

But math separates the men from the boys when it comes to the real world. Without math, opportunities are limited (hence the drive of liberals to prevent minorities from learning math - they need to keep their voting blocks intact), with math there are no limits.

It’s up to parents to understand this and push the kids through...and that’s life.


21 posted on 07/28/2012 3:14:05 PM PDT by BobL
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To: The_Reader_David

“(instead of the math-phobic ditzes who constitute 85% of the population of ed majors)”

I tend to call teachers drug and sex-crazed animals, at least during their college years...or certainly the Ed-majors that I went to college with.


22 posted on 07/28/2012 3:16:28 PM PDT by BobL
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To: LibertarianLiz

“I remember (its been some years ago) reading a book by Thomas Sowell about education in this country.”

The book is “Inside American Education” and it is frightening. It’s 20 years old. I read that book and vowed to NEVER let my kids step foot in public school. I kept that vow and certainly don’t regret it. And, as scary as that book is, things have only gotten worse since.


23 posted on 07/28/2012 3:22:07 PM PDT by BobL
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To: BobL
) parents stick to it.
^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^

Exactly! It is parents who are and have **always** done the teaching. The school is merely sending home a very expensive afterschooling curriculum.

My prediction:

If every government school in this nation were to disappear tonight, the **same** kids getting an education today would get one tomorrow. The same children NOT getting an education would not get one tomorrow.

Why?

Answer: Because little to NO learning happens in a government school. If children are learning it is due to the afterschooling and preschooling done by the parents, the child with his home assignments and projects, and paid and unpaid tutoring.

We spend **more** on K-12 education ( federal, state and local) than the military and studies have NEVER been done to prove that government schools teach anything at all. Studies have NEVER been done to show what is actually learned in the classroom as compared to what knowledge is IN THE HOME due to the parents, child, and tutoring.

24 posted on 07/28/2012 3:59:23 PM PDT by wintertime (:-))
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To: BobL

I agree 100% on the importance of math. When I wrote that post, I was thinking of one of my sons who is mathematically-inclined but, ironically, never enjoyed math. Yet, he was able to move ahead in math on his own, just by holding himself to a higher standard. He’s always aiming for a perfect score.


25 posted on 07/28/2012 4:03:15 PM PDT by Tired of Taxes
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To: BobL

Both of my girls had Catholic educations. They were both very ready for college.


26 posted on 07/28/2012 5:40:31 PM PDT by LibertarianLiz
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To: LibertarianLiz

“Both of my girls had Catholic educations. They were both very ready for college.”

Great to hear, and great job.


27 posted on 07/28/2012 5:52:56 PM PDT by BobL
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To: Tired of Taxes

“I was thinking of one of my sons who is mathematically-inclined but, ironically, never enjoyed math. Yet, he was able to move ahead in math on his own, just by holding himself to a higher standard. He’s always aiming for a perfect score.”

Believe me, 2 of my kids absolutely HATED math. But, as a parent, I didn’t care. It is far too important to be subject to their tastes at that age. They got some sore butts, but learned their math - and love me to this day for putting them through it.


28 posted on 07/28/2012 5:57:57 PM PDT by BobL
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To: wintertime

“Answer: Because little to NO learning happens in a government school. If children are learning it is due to the afterschooling and preschooling done by the parents, the child with his home assignments and projects, and paid and unpaid tutoring.”

Exactly. We sent our kids to Christian schools, but we always knew that it was for day-care, and maybe filling in a few loose ends, like history and some other stuff. But they were at least 6 years ahead in math and reading when they started, so we never expected any learning there (we just continued the math at home - the reading was long finished).


29 posted on 07/28/2012 6:02:40 PM PDT by BobL
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To: BobL

Congratulations on a job well done!


30 posted on 07/28/2012 6:06:43 PM PDT by wintertime (:-))
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To: upchuck

upchuck, sorry, the video is in the the article at my blog. I can’t get videos to post here. It’s really worth watching.


31 posted on 07/28/2012 6:13:25 PM PDT by maggiesnotebook
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To: upchuck

upchuck, sorry, the video is in the the article at my blog. I can’t get videos to post here. It’s really worth watching. http://www.maggiesnotebook.com/2012/07/convoluting-math-betraying-our-childrens-future/


32 posted on 07/28/2012 6:13:55 PM PDT by maggiesnotebook
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To: wintertime

“Congratulations on a job well done!”

Thanks, and dittos-back.


33 posted on 07/28/2012 6:25:58 PM PDT by BobL
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To: kabumpo
You misunderstood what I wrote, and possibly cannot understand the very idea - without reading comprehension, which takes a lot of reading and a lot of training - the students don’t learn how to think. You make my case for me

And you make the case for you being a pompous ass.

Now that the niceties are out of the way, while you are right about needing to read to be able to understand, however without the proper math training their education is incomplete.

34 posted on 07/28/2012 8:15:34 PM PDT by billva
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To: kabumpo
You misunderstood what I wrote, and possibly cannot understand the very idea - without reading comprehension, which takes a lot of reading and a lot of training - the students don’t learn how to think. You make my case for me

And you make the case for you being a pompous ass.

Now that the niceties are out of the way, while you are right about needing to read to be able to understand, however without the proper math training their education is incomplete.

35 posted on 07/28/2012 8:15:38 PM PDT by billva
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To: billva

Again, you make my case for me - resorting to the old liberal device of name-caliing when you don’t have an argument. I never said or implied that math shouldn’t be taught. I said that that’s not where the emphasis should be - it needs to be on reading and writing. Call me all the names you want - it won’t make up for the fact that you didn’t learn to read very well.


36 posted on 07/28/2012 10:57:29 PM PDT by kabumpo (Kabumpo)
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To: kabumpo
Again, you make my case for me - resorting to the old liberal device of name-caliing when you don’t have an argument. I never said or implied that math shouldn’t be taught. I said that that’s not where the emphasis should be - it needs to be on reading and writing. Call me all the names you want - it won’t make up for the fact that you didn’t learn to read very well.

Let's review this, the article was about what's wrong with math education. You make a post that I didn't agree with and I simply made a post back to you which I ended this way.

I don't disagree that what you say is important, just that you left out a very important cog.

To which you replied

You misunderstood what I wrote, and possibly cannot understand the very idea - without reading comprehension, which takes a lot of reading and a lot of training - the students don’t learn how to think. You make my case for me

So a mild disagreement with you somehow makes you feel I can't comprehend and I make your case for you? WOW, to which I responded by saying you were a pompous ass which then brings about calling me a liberal.

You are a piece of work and this last post of yours kind of proves my point about you I think.

I also think I see why no one else on this thoughtful topic bothered to respond to you.

I will end any attempt to have a dialogue with you but simply tell you that I am sure beyond any doubt that I have a far better grasp of math than you and after reading your posts back to me am almost as sure that my reading comprehension is at a minimum as good as yours and a very high probability of being better. I know I used a couple of math terms in that last sentence which might make your comprehension difficult.

To everyone else on this topic I apologize for getting involved with this poster and dragging down the topic.

37 posted on 07/29/2012 5:13:17 AM PDT by billva
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To: El Gato
My wife is a teacher educator. Many of her students headed for elementary schools, “hate” math and/or are “afraid of math”. When they come to her classroom that is. Not so much when they leave. She’s the math specialist in her small department (and the chair too). She changed the requirements so that those headed for middle or high school also must take “teaching elementary math”, so that if, as happens too often, the kids come to them deficient or “hating” or “afraid”, they can figure out what went wrong earlier, and fix it.

She’s only one teacher educator, in a small program. But when I think of how many kids are not exposed to a teacher in elementary school who can’t do, “hates” or “is afraid of” math because of her efforts, plus those who where her elementary students when she was in the public school classrom, the numbers get rather large. Still just a drop in the bucket, but still quite a legacy to have.

I knew a very smart Professor of Math Education who also was blessed with great common sense. As was suggested by someone else in this topic that using every day problems to teach math was a good approach. He had a whole series of labs cutting across K - 12 that were either everyday life situations that you could identify with or also riddles or puzzles that had a math basis for the solution. They tended to get and keep students attention.

However he also had something special he saved for students going into elementary education. He told them that the time in child's life when their mind is most open to math is in the elementary school age. And that sense most elementary teachers did not like math that put a special burden on them to work hard to have make sure students have the opportunity to learn math and that their fear of math did not hinder their students.

I have no idea how many he reached, but it does point out a flaw in our educational system.

For the most part this has been a very good topic and I bookmarked the utube above and also sent it to my daughter who after getting her kids into high school has become certified to teach math and has just gotten a job teaching high school math.

38 posted on 07/29/2012 7:17:23 AM PDT by billva
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To: billva

Calling someone an unpleasant name is what the liberals do - isn’t it? (Fascist, racist, bigot, etc.) You resorted to the same device, instead of simply stating your disagreement with me.
Yes, the article was on math education, and how children are being cheated. I was making the point that the very premise was faulty - it’s the mistaken idea, that began in the early 1950s, that math and science were the most essential subjects in school, and the accompanying neglect and devaluation of reading and writing that contributed to bringing our society to the mess it is in today. Many people, even intelligent, seemingly educated ones, can barely reason, because they can read only superficially, have not absorbed great literature, and have no cultural/historical references.
Whether a hundred people chime in to agree with me, or none, does not change the objective merit of what I say. And your attempt to disparage me because there is no supporting chorus - that’s an attitude that one encounters often among....liberals, who don’t have the ability to step out from the herd, because their identity and sense of self worth is defined by the group.


39 posted on 07/29/2012 8:40:14 AM PDT by kabumpo (Kabumpo)
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To: El Gato
My father’s parents were both teachers, my other grandfather was a teacher, Mother was a teacher, and Dad taught until WWII, when he became an inspector working in a defense plant. Back in those days, teaching and nursing were the only professional fields open to women - which meant that women able to do professional grade work were essentially drafted into teaching. Which in effect subsidized education.
I have two observations:
  1. If, like me, a child enjoyed word problems and despised number crunching, the teacher was more likely to harp on the lack of enthusiasm for number crunching than to recognize and reinforce, and strongly promote, competence in word problems. Most teachers hated the word problems themselves and didn’t elect to go into education because they were whizzes in mathematics.

  2. Today, with the advent of the khanacademy.orgweb site, math education can be done quite differently than traditionally.

40 posted on 07/29/2012 9:26:02 AM PDT by conservatism_IS_compassion (The idea around which “liberalism" coheres is that NOTHING actually matters except PR.)
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To: kabumpo
kabumpo, I tried to carry on a civil conversation with you and what you did was say that my response was so lacking that I proved your point.

That's pompous or arrogant, whichever. So I responded by telling you that your were a pompous ass, perhaps arrogant ass would have been better but whatever.

Yes I did not appreciate your curt response to what was legitimate conversation and bluntly told you so. If you don't like that try a more reasonable approach with whoever you might be exchanging with in the future. It won't be me as I recognize people who are arrogant or pompous and for the most part choose not to deal with them.

I might add that along with reading and comprehension comes communication at which you sadly fail.

41 posted on 07/29/2012 10:12:51 AM PDT by billva
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To: conservatism_IS_compassion
The khan academy is a great website. I do agree with teaching alternate methods, but if that means ignoring traditional methods that work for most students then I don't agree.

One Thing that you can, and should, do is teach, or least approve of, alternate methods that will work for students who may not comprehend the traditional method. Or use it in an example that might interest them.

42 posted on 07/29/2012 10:18:19 AM PDT by billva
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To: billva
The khan academy is a great website. I do agree with teaching alternate methods, but if that means ignoring traditional methods that work for most students then I don't agree.
The fundamental ideas of the Khan web site are: That paradigm can produce education without teachers or coaches, given a self-motivated learner. Given teacher or coach, the Khan web site maximizes the utility of the teacher by The Khan paradigm allows for self-pacing and for any exogenous motivation the teacher can provide. But the signal benefit of Khan is that you aren’t paying teachers to “reinvent the wheel” by doing lectures which are inherently one-size-fits-nobody. The lectures are done once, but the auditing of those lectures is unlimited.

The Khan Academy provides one particular lecture from one particular lecturer for each topic. In principle the paradigm would be unchanged if there were multiple lectures from multiple lecturers are available for each topic. I don’t claim that, in principle, no lecture by Khan can be excelled by any other lecturer. But with his free lecture Khan provides a minimum which any other lecturer must seek to at least in some sense excel, in order that his lecture be worth anyone’s attention.

The benefit of the canned lecture which is free and readily paused and repeated makes live, in-person lectures difficult to justify - especially if it comes at the expense of scarce student-teacher direct interaction. Let other lecturers assay to excel the utility of the Salman Khan lecture, by all means. But don’t expect the live lecture to ever fit the student as well as the canned lecture which the student views when, as, and if he needs it.


43 posted on 07/29/2012 12:37:23 PM PDT by conservatism_IS_compassion (The idea around which “liberalism" coheres is that NOTHING actually matters except PR.)
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To: conservatism_IS_compassion

The Kahn web site is also being used in tutor centers and math labs at many colleges and as supplementary material in K - 12 schools. And of course many students find their own way there.


44 posted on 07/30/2012 5:18:52 AM PDT by billva
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