SIXTH COLUMN

"History is philosophy teaching by example." (Lord Bolingbroke)

New Email Address: 6thColumn@6thcolumnagainstjihad.com.

Thursday, May 25, 2006

The Evolution of Math Instruction in the US, 1950 to the Present

Subject: evolution of new math; story as told to me:

Last week I purchased a burger at Burger King for $1.58. The countergirl took my $2, and I was digging for my change when I pulled 8 cents from my pocket and gave it to her. She stood there, holding the nickel and 3 pennies, while looking at the screen on her register. I sensed her discomfort, and tried to tell her to just give me two quarters, but she hailed the manager for help.

I tell you this to demonstrate the evolution in teaching math since the1950s:

1. Teaching Math In 1950

A logger sells a truckload of lumber for $100. His cost of production is4/5 of the price. What is his profit?

2. Teaching Math In 1960

A logger sells a truckload of lumber for $100. His cost of production is4/5 of the price, or $80. What is his profit?

3. Teaching Math In 1970

A logger sells a truckload of lumber for $100. His cost of production is$80. Did he make a profit?

4. Teaching Math In 1980

A logger sells a truckload of lumber for $100. His cost of production is$80 and his profit is $20. Your assignment: Underline the number 20.

5. Teaching Math In 1990

A logger cuts down a beautiful forest because he is selfish and inconsiderate and cares nothing for the habitat of animals or the preservation of our woodlands. He does this so he can make a profit of$20. What do you think of this way of making a living? Topic for class participation after answering the question: How did the birds andsquirrels feel as the logger cut down their homes? (There are no wrong answers.)

6. Teaching Math In 2006

Un hachero vende una carretada de madera para $100. El costo de la producciones es $80.

9 Comments:

  • At Thu May 25, 04:49:00 PM PDT, Blogger Polistra said…

    7. Teaching math in 2020:
    An infidel sells a truckload of lumber for $100. He charges 5% interest for late payment.
    Which of his hands do you cut off?

     
  • At Thu May 25, 05:28:00 PM PDT, Blogger Elmer's Brother said…

    Hilarious!

    On the serious side this is one of the reasons my wife an I have homeschooled our three children. My 6th and 9th grader just took a placement test at a local CC. Both of them can start taking freshman level math and English next year.

     
  • At Thu May 25, 05:39:00 PM PDT, Blogger Cubed © said…

    Polistra,

    That is HYSTERICAL! Wait a minute - it's not funny at all... But then, neither is the one I posted...

    I think I'm going to pull the electric blanket over my head, assume the fetal position, and turn the dial up to nine.

    That's what I do when I'm in a blue funk...

     
  • At Thu May 25, 05:48:00 PM PDT, Blogger Cubed © said…

    Elmer's,

    Now I can get back out from under the electric blanket! It's all you folks who are doing the homeschooling who will salvage enough of our kids to keep the ball rolling so that Polistra's joke won't come true, and maybe, with some luck, maybe even MY joke won't come true! Brrrr!!!

    I have been a super fan of homeschooling for many years - I think it's truly the only way to do an end-run around the institutionalized mediocrity of our school system. Unfortunately, I wasn't able to homeschool my own kids, but somehow, they managed to escape any obvious harm.

    Please, give my HEARTIEST congratulations to yourself, your wife, and those great kids!

    One of the people who really cemented my admiration for homeschooling had kids who all did fantastically, and went to Ivy League colleges. Not too long ago, she started her own small school where she applies the principles she learned schooling her own kids.

    She gets phenomenal results, and I plan to do a piece on it in the not too distant future and post it over with the rest of the stuff at 6thCAJ.

     
  • At Thu May 25, 05:55:00 PM PDT, Blogger Always On Watch said…

    Cubed,
    I think I'm going to pull the electric blanket over my head, assume the fetal position, and turn the dial up to nine.

    That's what I do when I'm in a blue funk...


    That's my plan!

    Seriously now...Homeschooling will continue to grow. It's the only avenue for those parents who don't want their children's education dumbed down to nothing but sensitivity training.

     
  • At Thu May 25, 06:09:00 PM PDT, Blogger Cubed © said…

    "It's the only avenue for those parents who don't want their children's education dumbed down to nothing but sensitivity training."

    "Sensitivity training!" I LOVE THAT! Beautiful! Ain't it the truth?

    I know there are some truly great teachers out there in the schools, and I feel so sorry for them! I wish more of them could do what you are doing.

    I know, I know, I live a rich fantasy life...

    Be careful with that blanket, OK?

     
  • At Fri May 26, 03:23:00 AM PDT, Blogger Eleanor © said…

    Cubed: I returned to school in the late 80s only to find that my local school board had "devalued" the course that I had taught for years. There had been notice or discussion. One day we offered a rigorous, college-prep course, the next content had been transformed into the equivalent of old joke: basket-weaving 101. The explanation: "Students of this age need exploration. They can take the more rigorous course at the next level." The junior high became a middle school in which academic achievement was sacrificed for touchy-feelie group think and personal exploration.

    That shift continued on a downward spiral until the powers-that-are decided that "schools required accountability" as nothing was being taught, students could not read, write, compute, or cogitate. The blame was heaped on the shoulders of teachers that implemented the mandated programs created by morons.

    Today's teachers work under tremendous pressure, in fear of their jobs to lift the student population out ignorance. They are reviled because students didn't perform and were allowed to leave school without requisite skills, even for basic survival in the job market. Although asperion was and continues to be cast at teachers of all levels, no one thinks to point the finger at the real culprit. The authentic villains are at the policy level, for they pulled the rug out from under American educators and their students by watering down courses and texbooks in a social experiment.

    Why aren't they hunted down and exposed as are the crooks in big business? Some enterprising journalist in quest of a Pulizter Prize could do very well for himself...

     
  • At Fri May 26, 08:17:00 AM PDT, Blogger Elmer's Brother said…

    Eleanor,

    I would never blame the teachers in this case. I am also not a homeschooling Nazi. Those are people who suggest it's the only way to educate your kid. It was convenient when I was in the service, (we could move or take vacations anytime of the year), we could inculcate our faith, (not allowed in public school) and we could make sure they were learning the material even if it meant repeating or going slower.

    Teachers have my utmost respect and admiration and they should be esteemed more than they are.

    I had problems with the testing and curriculum changes that were happening in the public schools. My understanding of some of the testing that was being conductd was they were no longer perfomance based but behavior based.

     
  • At Fri May 26, 08:19:00 AM PDT, Blogger Elmer's Brother said…

    I have read that homeschooling may become the new monasteries, given the threat of radical Islam this is a definite possibility.

     

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