An Advanced Math Education Revolution Is Underway In the U.S. (theatlantic.com) 218
AthanasiusKircher writes: The Atlantic has an >extended article on the recent surge in advanced math education at the primary and secondary levels in the U.S., arguing that last year's victory for the U.S. in the Math Olympiad was not a random anomaly. Participation in math camps, afterschool or weekend math "academies," and math competitions has surged in recent years, with many programs having long wait lists. Inessa Rifkin, cofounder of one of these math academies, argues that the problems with math education begin in the 2nd and 3rd grades: ""The youngest ones, very naturally, their minds see math differently.... It is common that they can ask simple questions and then, in the next minute, a very complicated one. But if the teacher doesn't know enough mathematics, she will answer the simple question and shut down the other, more difficult one." These alternative math programs put a greater focus on problemsolving: "Unlike most math classes, where teachers struggle to impart knowledge to students—who must passively absorb it and then regurgitate it on a test—problemsolving classes demand that the pupils execute the cognitive bench press: investigating, conjecturing, predicting, analyzing, and finally verifying their own mathematical strategy. The point is not to accurately execute algorithms, although there is, of course, a right answer... Truly thinking the problem through—creatively applying what you know about math and puzzling out possible solutions—is more important."
The article concludes by noting that programs like No Child Left Behind have focused on minimal standards, rather than enrichment activities for advanced students. The result is a disparity in economic backgrounds for students in pricey math activities; many middleclass Americans investigate summer camps or sports programs for younger kids, but they don't realize how important a math program could be for a curious child. As Daniel Zaharopol, founder of a related nonprofit initiative, noted in his searches to recruit lowincome students: "Actually doing math should bring them joy."
The article concludes by noting that programs like No Child Left Behind have focused on minimal standards, rather than enrichment activities for advanced students. The result is a disparity in economic backgrounds for students in pricey math activities; many middleclass Americans investigate summer camps or sports programs for younger kids, but they don't realize how important a math program could be for a curious child. As Daniel Zaharopol, founder of a related nonprofit initiative, noted in his searches to recruit lowincome students: "Actually doing math should bring them joy."
drop coding, do math (Score:5, Insightful)
drop the silly coding classes that gives nothing ('nerds' will learn anyways, others never will), do maths!

but will americans ever be free of mind control to even ask,
"I admit that twice two makes four is an excellent thing, but if we are to give everything its due, twice two makes five is sometimes a very charming thing too."  from 'notes from underground' by fyodor dostoyevsky
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drop the silly coding classes that gives nothing ('nerds' will learn anyways, others never will), do maths!
When I was in school, I learn calculus, and I learned programming. The programming has been about a thousand times more useful. Programming is also a better way to learn logical thinking. If your proof is wrong, you may never even know it. But if your program is wrong, it won't work. Calculus classes should spend less time on proofs, and more on things like numerical integration.
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When I was in school, I learn calculus, and I learned programming. The programming has been about a thousand times more useful.
I didn't find programming useful until after I learned mathematics. Since I was terrible programmer on the Commodore 64 as a teenager, I avoided computers and took plenty of mathematics in college. A decade later I went back to school to learn computer programming and get my technical certifications. Everything fell into place with programming and I made the president's list for maintaining a 4.0 GPA in my major.
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I've done extensive work in math, logic, and CS, including programming. Math and logic are by far the most useful. CS is good for grinding out mundane chores after you have used your math and logic to solve the problem.
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CS is good for grinding out mundane chores after you have used your math and logic to solve the problem.
Most programming is sorting, searching, string processing, and user interfaces. Those involve little, if any, math (unless you think you need to design your own sorting algorithm). Math is needed for 3D graphics, and physical processes simulation, but even those rarely involve anything beyond first year calculus. You are never going to need to integrate the cube root of the cosecant.
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Coding will only be useful as long as there is a dearth of coders.
And gold will only be valuable as long as there is a dearth of gold. Unless you count fools gold, then we have plenty of coders.
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Math up to about logic and maybe trig is useful in daily life for most careers. You need calc only in fields where you have to use those methods to make pertinent calculations or you're an academic.
I've spent 20 years being shitty in calculus and having not suffered in the slightest. However, coding has kept me employed (in part) and well paid.
It's good to know advanced math, and you should pursue it if you are good at it, but if you don't have the knack for it, you're better off learning something else.
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Education is getting better (Score:4, Interesting)
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I have noticed that Public education is getting better in the US
I disagree, the article has some very telling things to say between the lines:
The students are being produced by a new pedagogical ecosystem—almost entirely extracurricular—that has developed online and in the country’s rich coastal cities and tech meccas.
Parents of students in the acceleratedmath community, many of whom make their living in stem fields, have enrolled their children in one or more of these programs to s
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The correct arithmetic techniques are Soroban techniques from ancient Japanese history. Everything else is longpath bullshit that makes for slow, inaccurate computation.
Stop repeating what idiots say on Fox. (Score:3)
Clearly you need to do a bit more research. Common core isn't about methods or techniques at all.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/... [wikipedia.org]
"The standards do not dictate any particular pedagogy or what order topics should be taught within a particular grade level."
http://www.corestandards.org/a... [corestandards.org]
"That is
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Example: http://www.corestandards.org/M... [corestandards.org]
Re:Education is getting better (Score:4, Informative)
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The teaching "experts" who came up with "New Math" were not seeing anyone. They were idiots and ruined math for decades.
Um, no. Well, you can argue that they "ruined" math education, but they weren't "idiots." The New Math was developed in the 1960s mostly by college professors and advanced math people in reaction to the "Space Race." The idea was to introduce mathematical abstractions (set theory, formalizations of analysis, etc.) at lower levels in education, which might be beneficial to students who were heading toward engineering and science degrees.
As you rightly point out, there were a number of problems with the
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Re:Education is getting better (Score:4, Interesting)
I disagree. In fact had the opposite effect: New Math as taught in the late 1970s/early 1980s was unsuccessful in teaching precollege math.
Sorry, but I'm not sure we're talking about the same thing. The New Math in secondary education was developed in the 1950s and implemented in the 1960s. By the early 1970s, the New Math movement was largely dead.
By replacing basic Math education like algebra/geometry with the screwed up "New Math" they ruined math for those of us who actually had to take it in college for engineering. You can't learn Calculus without a solid understanding of Algebra and Geometry.
I'm not sure you know what you're talking about. In the mid1950s, high school enrollment in Algebra was down to about 25% of all high students, and enrollment in Geometry was down to less than 12% of high school students. The New Math was about encouraging students to take such courses, by combatting an antiintellectual populism in the previous generation of educational reformers. It also encouraged clarity in concepts and algorithms in these classes which would line up better with advanced math taught in college. Also, the very idea of teaching calculus in high school was a product of the New Math reform.
New Math didn't teach what we needed to know to be successful in college math.
Without the reform of New Math curricula in the 1950s and 1960s, you may not have even had the option of taking math like geometry or algebra in high school, let alone calculus. How would missing out on such things be better preparation for college math??
I think you're focusing too much on the reforms to primary education, and you don't seem to know what secondary New Math curricular reform was about. It was mostly about emphasizing the math you think claim it was jettisoning from curricula.
I'd suggest you read about what the New Math reform actually was about. Here's [csun.edu] a short intro to curricular reforms over the 20th century, here's [iastate.edu] a longer history of the New Math movement, and here's an intro [rochester.edu] to the sorry state of secondary math education in the U.S. around 1950  which definitely included little decent prep in geometry or algebra. One of the main goals of the New Math reform was to incorporate "a solid understanding of Algebra and Geometry" into the U.S. high school. At times, the reformers did go too far into abstraction, but I'm really not sure what you're talking about.
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Sets. Venn Diagrams. We always called it "New Math" but maybe it had some other term at that point.
Well, set theory and stuff like Venn diagrams were part of some New Math curricula beginning in the 1960s, but mostly at the primary (or maybe middleschool) level. They were intended to teach things like Boolean algebra, which would be relevant to new trends (at that time) in computer programming. Again, the emphasis was on getting students uptospeed to participate in the Space Race, etc.
And I also should note that Venn diagrams were in fact meant to be visual aids to support the new abstract concept
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The Soviets had a better idea. Teach standard mathematics faster to the bright
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You claim to have done research but you haven't presented any, and then you call others lazy for not doing the research themselves. You might as well not have done the research then.
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Re: Education is getting better (Score:4, Interesting)
the common core scam (which is incompatible with logicbased mathematics), kids can no longer fail regardless of performance
Common Core tests have a high failure rate because of the much higher goals. You're conflating so called "Common Core curriculum" which is sold by private companies with the standardized Common Core progression benchmarks. Any test can be "Common Core" as long as it closely aligns with the Common Core benchmarks. How the tests are done or how the curriculum is taught has nothing to do with "Common Core" except marketing.
Math is a Chore (Score:5, Insightful)
The way math is taught, Math is a chore. The way common core teaches it, it's a stupid, idiotic chore.
There is never an example of the wonders of math. No examples of what can be accomplished and how you can actually benefit. It's just a series of numbered problems with the answers to the odd numbers in the back and precious little explanation. Something to finish before class is out and to remember just long enough to pass the next test.
Math is a chore because it's taught like a chore.
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Re:Math is a Chore (Score:4, Insightful)
Yes, but there needs to be a context and a purpose to that chore.
When you are learning to read first grade books, the teacher is reading third grade level books to you. You see what's possible. YOU want to read that book. But you can't. So you work harder on the books you can read in order to be able to read the higher level books.
It's like being taught to sculpt marble by MichaelAngelo, but he only lets you see the 6 square inches around the chisel.
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The way math is taught, Math is a chore. The way common core teaches it, it's a stupid, idiotic chore. There is never an example of the wonders of math. No examples of what can be accomplished and how you can actually benefit.
Can you elaborate with some ideas on how to teach math so that it's more engaging?
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Yes, but there needs to be a context and a purpose to that chore.
I found calculus an arcane mystery until the teacher explained how to calculate the optimum shape for a can to use the least material. About the simplest use but immediately demonstrated the potential of what I was learning.
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Re:Math is a Chore (Score:4, Insightful)
Things you need to rote memorize in math: Complement sets {(1,4),(2,3)} and {(1,9),(2,8),(3,7),(4,6)}; Multiplication tables; Computational algorithms (addition and subtraction using the complement sets; multiplication and division using the multiplication tables; mental calculation for square roots, and the generalized nth root algorithm); Algebraic rules. Have these at your fingertips and a computation is equivalent to its result: glance at a page of numbers and recite the result immediately, without thinking.
Things you *should* memorize in math by network: Algebraic formulas; Trigonometric identities; Geometric formulas; Methods of derivations of the prior. These are things which tell about each other. You'll remember how they work by working with them; you'll associate them together by how and why they function; and you'll begin recognizing that pieces of equations are related to pieces of other equations, allowing you to put them back together when you forget. That association will let you walk your memory back to any equation you need if it isn't immediately familiar; if you *do* forget something like the Law of Cosines, you can recreate it based on what you do remember.
The set of required rote memorystuff you're going to need to repeat to yourself again and againis minimal. Even then, you'll likely memorize the compliments, the algorithms, and the algebraic rules by habit of doing; you'll need to memorize the multiplication table by brute force, since you're only ever going to focus on recalling a few elements here and there, instead of all elements *constantly*. Everything else fits into large, complex systems which you can map out in your mind to develop a broad field of organized, associated information, thus strengthening the links to all these facts by making them cognitive.
When *I* was in school, they just made us memorize each new concept and equation. We had to recite equation when prompted, and were only given them in the form of "This equation solves this type of problem." Rote memorization in inappropriate places.
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Math IS a chore. Learning IS a chore. People need to realize that not everything in life is "fun". You need to do the chores in order to get work done. Too many people don't want to put in the work.
While that might be partly true, it is also true that Math education is a chore because it was treated as a process of memorizing, not discovering  memorize process x,y,z so you can answer contrived questions a, b, and c. There is an excellent essay on this topic: A mathematician's lament [maa.org].
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One of the more interesting thing about Common Core is the effort to change this, to teach problem solving rather than memorization. It's also one of the reasons common core is lamented so heavily by some people, that is because the answer is less important than the method of developing the answer. Some people look at a common core kids math problem, and these people grew up memorizing answers, and they can't conceivably solve a problem that is based on the premise of teaching solving the problem rather tha
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I've seen some of the posted problems that target common core as absurd and what I saw was ingenious problems that teach problem solving
My sentiments exactly. I stumbled on some blog post that was lambasting common core and when I got to the actual example that illustrates the author's premise, I was like, that's actually a really good problem and a fantastic way to teach kids math. Realizing that this is what people are bitching about regarding the common cold curriculum, my faith in humanity eroded just a little bit more.
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Learning is not hard; it is, however, *effort*.
It's also technology. I've been collecting some of the high technologyspanning modern, classical, and *lost* technologyand trying to turn that into a primary education system. That's a complex feat of engineering *well* beyond my personal capability. I'm trying to put something together that adults can understand and which skilled teachers can stream in the same rough order and detail I provide to teach firstgrade children; I can't create a viable cl
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The way math is taught, Math is a chore. The way common core teaches it, it's a stupid, idiotic chore.
Having seen quite a bit of Common Core math at this point, I have to disagree. I have taken a lot of advanced math, and use it every day. Common Core teaches math the way I think about math. As an example: What's 25 + 36? I don't approach this problem by adding 6 and 5, getting onecarryone, then adding 1+2+3 and putting it in the tens column. I remember that 2+3 = 5, so 20+30=50, with 5+6 left over, which gives us one more ten (for 60) and one left over (for 61). Common Core teaches addition that way, with lots of visualizations so children can see how much ten is, and that a hundred is ten groups of ten, and so on. This is just one example. It teaches kids to reason about numbers, not just calculate.
An additional advantage of the standardization brought about by Common Core is that it makes is possible for third parties to create software, web sites, etc. that are aligned with the standard and thus relevant to what's happening in the actual curriculum, without having to custombuild for each school district. This means that there is a ton of supplemental material available on the web, a lot of it free, that is perfectly aligned with the curriculum. It's awesome.
That having been said, teachers who were already in the habit of teaching math as dreary, meaningless memorized computation can certainly do so with Common Core. That's not a problem with the standards. The problem there is the teachers.
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I use the same technique on every arithmetic problem.
If you show me some numbers to add5736 + 7452I go left to right. 5 + 7 is 12. How do I know? Because I have the sets {(1,4),(2,3)} and {(1,9),(2,8),(3,7),(4,6)} memorized. I know 8 is 5+3; I can also rederive this: (2,8) gives me 2 on 5, which swaps via (2,3), and so now I have 3. 5+3 = 8. Check it; I didn't bother doing the math, just like I didn't bother verifying that 53 = 2 (because I'm adding 7 to 5, thus (3,7), I subtract 3 from 5 and
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They train firstgraders with this in every Japanese primary school. They start using a Soroban, which is a 4/1 abacus where the top bead represents 5 and the lower 4 beads represent 1, which provides a visual and mechanical representation of numerical computation [youtu.be].
As I said: the first set are complements on 5. (1,4) are complements across 5: 5  1 is 4, 5  4 is 1. If you have 8 on a 4/1 abacus, you have 5 + 3. If you subtract 4, you have to toggle 5 and add 1: you get 0 + 3+1. Mechanically, this
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The way math is taught, Math is a chore. The way common core teaches it, it's a stupid, idiotic chore.
YessereeBob, I think its important for my kids to learn to skip the hard stuff, and only develop skills in the fun stuff. I tell them, "if it seems like a chore, that is your excuse to perform poorly". My youngest wanted to be a clown, but she didn't like the chore of putting on the makeup.
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The way math is taught, Math is a chore
Well, it is being taught by teachers who don't actually understand it all that well, so that is the way it has to be.
Now, I don't actually know what goes for "advanced maths" in primary and secondar education in the States, but I hope it is something that tries to dive into the actual, intuitive foundations of the subject and tries to impart real understanding of mathematical reasoning. Take elementary set theory as an example; when I learned about it in primary school, it was rather vague and hard to find
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Here we go with the common core backlash...
Lets say a great many people all need to do something in their lives that the vast majority believe could be improved, backed by numerous scientific studies. A program is devised based on many years of research that attempts to change the focus of this task from memorization to understanding. Since this is a significant paradigm (sorry) shift, those who came up from the old system are confused and as with most new programs there are a few bugs to work out. Should w
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Depends on the textbook. We decided to start homeschooling and I'm using a Saxton Algebra Book. I love it. Each chapter increments what was done previously and there are some examples worked out followed by a handful of problems on that material. Then the problem set is 30 questions that can go back to the beginning of the book. Each question has the reference chapter in parenthesis in case the child needs to review it. That way you are always checking retention.
After an initial rough period transitioning f
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Sounds good to me.
This is the kind of outofthebox thinking that we need in our schools!
Its maths dammit (Score:2)
In the rest of the world the subject is mathematics
plural
apparntly in America there is only one math.
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apparntly in America there is only one math.
When you abbreviate a word you don't tack letters back on the end. We don't shorten Chemistry to Chemy, after all.
Thank goodness. Until I saw this exchange, I thought I was the only one here who wanted to have a fruitless 30minute argument about where exactly the letter u belongs or doesn't belong.
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ask Shatner who gets credit (Score:5, Insightful)
From my experience with kids of this generation, there's one teacher who's responsible for most of the positive increase in mathematical competency in recent years: Salman Khan.
I'm sure you'll find any number of politicians and their cronies at the textbook corporations who will claim credit, but when they mess everything up and the children find themselves mystified and befuddled, they turn to Khan for help.
Some schools are very good now (Score:2)
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I grew up in the same time period, what I remember is teaching the same math every single year from 1st to 6th grade. Maybe a shade more difficult but I agree, pages and pages of mind numbingly boring problems.
Note (Score:3)
The kids winning these competitions today were not taught Common Core math in elementary school.
Or to put it another way, these gains will not be long lived as the inadequately taught youth in elementary school today make their way into the secondary levels.
Journey to the Center of Dearth (Score:4, Interesting)
My father taught me binary in the early seventies when I was still in elementary school, with black marbles and a grey egg carton. I got it right away. Numbers were one thing, representations of numbers was another thing, and these could be whatever you found convenient, so long as you obeyed certain rules (I wasn't so accelerated that I immediately started banging out Euclid's Elements on the piano).
Then I thought really hard one Saturday afternoon about fractions (on the unit interval, which I thought of as positive integers with the numerator greater than the denominator), and discovered that even though there are a lot of them, it is possible to enumerate them exhaustively, though not by the traditional "counting up" procedure, which got me hooked into the problem of the common divisor thing.
The next project I recall was to exhaustive write out the Tic Tac Toe game tree. Since I was a lazy bastard (always have been) this involving thinking very hard about something somewhat like symmetry groups.
Over the annual summer visit to my grandparents—small town prairie Badlands without the cool geography, though often we managed a trip to see the hoodoos—I played a lot of solitaire on the goldengreen shag carpet which Puss Puss—the duodecarian house cat who lived in the shadows under my grandparent's bed (the short duration of our visits was probably for her sake)—sometimes preferred in her dotage over asking out into the Canadian winter. Quite undeterred by the sticky and/or stinky patches, I managed to clearly formulate the concept of a "decision procedure" and that such a thing could be unambiguously specified; furthermore, I worked out (at first empirically) that the greedy algorithm was provably not optimal for Klondike (for me at that time, all Solitaire was just "Solitaire", though I knew several).
At age ten, the boundary between empiricism and proof is still a fuzzy one.
In grade five, I spent a lot of time (by myself) trying to puzzle out the ratelimiting step in longhand square root. I had by then also discovered E=IR and P=IE. Pretty soon I had determined that this generates 4 choose 1 times 4 choose 2 simple algebraic forms. But for an entire painful week, some kind of thick cloud entered my brain and I couldn't reliably write all the forms down without a lot of mucking around; this I knew to be completely bogus, and a permanent blot on my record. By the time the cloud passed, I was pretty good at substitution and gathering. Later, when I first encountered a matrix (don't recall), I immediately went to myself "oh, that's just algebra, better organized". At least something stuck.
Now, during this entire period of my life, I was in a constant state of deeply repressed rage about this thing called "school", with all the inherent stimulation of Puss Puss waiting out the daily bedtime / ultimate final departure of the grandchildren (geriatric cat yay!) from the furthest dark remove under the master bed.
Grade six came as a shock. For the first time I experienced a math teacher who believed in letting kids learn at their own natural rate. He quickly put four of us a private work program. We could go as fast as we wanted, but the rule was we had to do all of the tedious exercises at the end of every chapter. Many of these exercises were heavy on the pencil work, so I only made it through grades six, seven, eight, and nine. My fingers put in about 90% of the work (this is not actually a bad thing), and my brain put in the other 10% (this being 100 times more than 0.1%). Awesome!
So I was armed, locked, and loaded for bear when I showed up at the beginning of grade seven. I figured I could knock off ten, eleven, twelve by Easter, and still have a month left over for real math at long last.
Problem: my grade seven teacher thought my purpose in life was to sit enthralled by his boring lectures. Shields up! I don't recall a single thing he wrote on the board in math class the entire year, and I just sat there doing stupid pet tricks with numbers—no useful development whatsoever.
So eventually that year we have this weird event day outdoors, and one of the girls has been asked to demonstrate her figure skating. She was jumping! And spinning! And throwing one of her legs around without falling down! (On skates, I was still working my way from three legs to two.) Wow! Some adult somewhere actually gives a shit about her natural abilities, and gives her not only the opportunity, but also coaching, and even a pat on the back. How is this possible?
That was the day I realized I was a tentcamp refugee in the world of math phobia.
By this point, whatever natural ability I had was on a fast track to nowhere. My the miracle of moving from one province (relatively good school system) to another (not so good school system), it turns out that my grade nine school year is spent repeating my grade eight school year. Back in grade six, the gradenine math book had only challenged my pencil, and this was now my third tour of duty.
My grade nine math teacher surely recognized that I was paying him 1% of my full attention, out of 1% of one corner of one eye. Sometime midyear, I hear from a classmate that there's this thing called a "math competition". "Oh," I said, waking up from a long coma. "That might almost be interesting." Later that day I go up to my math teacher (this being our longest point of contact for the entire year) and say "I heard there's this math competition thing." He says, "there's no point bothering, you wouldn't be good at it." He wouldn't even tell me the room where it was held. Revenge? Or just a cockroach sucker?
Funny he should think that. Two years after my parents finally wake up and send me to a private school, I was ranked nationally. This after a four year hiatus with my parking brake engaged. So, while this is a story about opportunity wasted, it's not a story about being ruined—you can only be ruined if you let it happen.
But what did happen is that my ability, under my random selftutelage, folded back in on itself. Lacking a curated challenge, I posed my own quirky challenges, and I spent a lot of time thinking about myself thinking about myself. I became very good at thinking about myself, and I finally matured into an adroit, adept, metacognitive gadfly. Substance about substance, not anchored to substance.
No worries. I figure this will all pay off at some point in my seventies, when the world is adrift with cognitive agents. "Somebody ... please! ... is there metacognitive specialist in the house? Our pets are running wild!" Well, had my early education gone a little differently (you know, with any structure at all), I could now be the guy building the metacognitive agents, instead of cooling my jets sitting around waiting to fix them.
Whatever. It all works out in the end.
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If we let you get ahead, that's isomorphic to letting the other guy get behind. And we can't have that.
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Whoops. Four choose one times three choose two. My fingers sometimes get the best of me.
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My father taught me binary in the early seventies when I was still in elementary school, with black marbles and a grey egg carton. I got it right away. Numbers were one thing, representations of numbers was another thing, and these could be whatever you found convenient, so long as you obeyed certain rules
This is why the Japanese start on the Soroban and then move the damn thing out of the classroom.
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I didn't have it quite that bad, but vaguely similar. My 6th grade math teacher realized I didn't need to be there and assigned me selfpaced algebra instead. I was lazy, but eventually worked through quite a bit of the book. Then 7th grade came, and I was back in prealgebra, before 8th grade had algebra again. I dealt with the boredom by reading novels through all of 7th and half of 8th grade (before it got ahead of where I had been) math. The teacher for 78 had mixed feelings, sometimes just letting me
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x * x =x ^2
(x1)(x+1)=x^2 +x x 1 = x^2 1
Should work for any numbers...
(x2)(x+2)=x^2  4
And so forth. Algebra...
Math education turns students off! (Score:2)
I remember elementary and high school math from the 80s and early 90s. It was an endless cycle of memorization of procedures and formulas, with very little emphasis on the real utility of it all. In particular, I remember plane geometry proofs that barely made sense to me  I can't imagine what someone who was bad at math or disinterested thought of those. That, and the algebra manipulation phase (factoring, quadratic equations, etc.) I will always remember that x = (b +/ sqrt(b^2  4ac)) / 2a  for som
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what needs to be taught differently in early math so that students will enjoy it?
Here's my answer...from the perspective of a licensed math teacher in the state of Minnesota, plus the father of a twoyearold and an 18yearold...
1) Teach parents how to teach their children. As a teacher, when I conferenced with parents, there was always a high likelihood that students that struggled with math had parents struggle as well. (And they would openly admit this, sometimes even with pride. It was very common
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I would imagine it varies a lot from person to person. I really liked patterns, for one. Any time a sequence or series came up, I really enjoyed it. And the shapes, in geometry, but absolutely not the proofs. One of my favorite moments came in 5th grade, learning about different bases, and converting from one to another. I told myself then, "This is so much fun, I wish I could do it as a job." Curiously enough, a decade later I landed a job doing web design and did get to occasionally translate between deci
US has always placed well !!! (Score:2)
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They pretty much always were top 3. Looking at other countries, only China has a better trackrecord coming in 1st often. Other countries placing well historically are Russia and SouthKorea, but on average the US seems to do better (historically I would say 2nd after China).
So really, the are making a moot point. I
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Yeah, I think it's reading WAY to much into it to say that they placed well because the US education system has improved.
"fuzzy math" with letters instead of numbers (Score:2)
http://tucson.com/news/local/e... [tucson.com]
https://en [wikipedia.org]
Revolution? (Score:2)
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But will it get you a job? Only employers know what it is important to know.
Remember, consumer: 2 + 2 = 5
You'll do fine around here.
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I often said that if you use them round fat bottom two's, it should be approximately equal to 5.
It can help you workout how bad that forced meal p (Score:2)
It can help you workout how bad that forced meal plan is and how fast that student loans interest adds up.
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Based on surveys conducted on graduated seniors at my University math majors were some of the most highly paid degrees in the entire place with starting salaries a year out in the six figures range. Most of them were people with advanced degrees in statistics and were employed creating models for investment on wall street.
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Well yeah, all the money is in analytics. Google, IBM, Political Science, basically anything involving statistics and analytics is going to be futureproof as far as jobs are concerned. It's one thing to crunch the data, but it's quite another to understand it well enough to do modeling.
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But will it get you a job?
If you plan to move to India and work for peanuts, you may have a chance.
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Jobs are a complex economic concept. You don't get a job because *you* are useful; you get a job because the economy needs you to produce something. Failing to understand this has lead to things like the public push for statesupported college, although that's got its major roots in other misunderstandings.
The main driver of employmentand unemploymentis efficiency. Each time you increase efficiency, you *lose* some employment. Given time, market pressures move prices toward costs, which are lower
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Businesses will send their employees to college
No business will send their workers to college, they'll send them to a tech school for specific classes or to training seminars. None of which are a replacement for a good education. Technical knowledge expires quickly, education lasts a lifetime.
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Technical knowledge expires quickly, education lasts a lifetime.
I remember all my chemistry from college. All my math, too. Those history classes really changed my life.
Wait, no they didn't.
Even if I remembered all of this, it wouldn't be much use. What's of use is what's used in my other knowledge areas, the active ones. Engineer? You'll remember your math. Chemist? You're going to remember some chemistry. Computer programmer? I bet you've forgotten your history and physics.
No, that "education lasts a lifetime" thing is a platitude. You haven't suggeste
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Yes a very, very few do. And it would be wonderful if anyone could take from the commons and profit by adding value to what nature has provided. Unfortunately the one percent have laid claim to anything that should be available to be had for free. Such is life!
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Well, it's a long term gripe that society as a whole would be much better served devoting to intellectually elite student's education just a fraction of the money spent making sure every last clown can calculate change by the time they graduate.
But you know, political memes and "them elites don't need it! >:( "
And that was before all this privledge meme shit hit the fan. Try it today.
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Of course it could be the fault of common core that takes the kids into a huge detour to figure out simple results.
Funny. I thought New Math in the 1960's got the blame for kids not being able to make change. Now get off my lawn!
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I was once, after a long day at work, trying to buy a loaf of bread and a can of spaghetti when there was some kind of fault with the register. The cashier wouldn't sell it to me. I told him the amount (IIRC, you didn't even need to carry anything), put the right money down and walked off with my dinner.
"You can't do that ... I'll call the police!" he yelled after me, to general amusement.
Oh, one other thing: that's arithmetic, not mathematics.
Re:Math is fine! (Score:4, Insightful)
He had a point. The register isn't for math, it is for *accounting*. He has to true up his drawer against the receipts for that shift. One loaf of bread isn't going to be a huge issue, but if loaves start walking out the door and the cameras pick up the cashier taking cash and not entering it, it is possible that the cashier gets in trouble at least for failing to account for things.
Worse, if someone actually is stealing those loaves or cans of spaghetti (low amounts of shoplifting are common in stores) and the cashier is seen taking money for those things which is not accounted for, they assume he or she is running a side business and pocketing the cash.
So yeah, he's probably not going to jail, but you were not entirely in the right there.
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Right, because it's totally impossible to write it down on paper (like in the olden days, and like some small shops do even now) then ring it up later.
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Did you suggest that to him? Or did you just get mad because he made you wait because his register didn't work and you only had two items and tell him to get bent?
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English might help too.
Unlikely. Common core is a set of standards defining what they should be able to do, not a set of methods defining how.
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It totally does matter, because you're just plain wrong. The full title is "Common core state standards initiative". They aren't talking about heraldic flags there.
Straight from the horse's mouth. Not Fox. Not Vacccinesmakeyoucommunistandgay.org.
http://www.corestandards.org/a... [corestandards.org]
Scroll down to "Myths About Implementation".
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They don't understand it because like my early education they were taught memorization, not problem solving. Common core focuses on the later, not the former.
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