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Whaddya know? Less is more. How about that!

Posted By: Dick Schutz on August 2, 2007
 
I find this paper and the accompanying references [Desktop accessible; thank you!] a breath of fresh air. Particularly heartening is the paragraph in Wilson (2005):

“The good news is that there is very little mathematics that must be master in K-12 to be prepared for college. Students need to know basic arithmetic by with I mean the 4 operations with whole numbers, decimals and fractions. They need to know ratios, proportions and percent. Underlying this is the base 10 place value system. They need to know some measurement and basic geometry facts. That and using those skills at problem solving, pretty much takes care of K-6 or 7. After that they need two years of a good algebra course and it is desirable that they have some real Euclidean geometry. I have skimped of course by not specifying what should be taught in algebra but this is not the place.”

That “bill of particulars” should be “easy” to deliver on. The daunting reality of currently prevailing K-12 math ed, jpwever, is how much work it will take to bring “content standards,” texts, and tests in line with these specs. Neither governments, teacher training institutions, K-12 administrative authorities, nor publishers, so far as I can see, have the slightest inclination to act on the “good news.” They're all off chasing "adequate yearly progress." Very sad.

Dick Schutz
3RsPlus@usinter.net
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 Whaddya know? Less is more. How about that! by Dick Schutz on August 2, 2007
     
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