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shocked… shocked…

Posted by vlorbik on November 14, 2009

“A form of mathematics stripped of much of its intellectual content has obvious repercussions for higher education and the American economy.”

(boilerplate from s. stotsky)

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6 Responses to “shocked… shocked…”

  1. Vanessa said

    Interesting, depressing … was a mathie in what seems like another life. I thought ed wars were just for soft & politically suspicious subjects like lit & culture & that the harmony of the spheres would be safe from such lilliputian predations. May I add absurd to the list? I skimmed but bookmarked to return to later.

  2. Sue said

    Boilerplate is right. Do you agree with her, Owen? I’ve saved it to print once my computer situation is resolved, but here’s a line I noticed:

    The heart of the disagreement between progressive math educators and mathematicians …

    Some of us are both. I think she’s setting up her argument with more distinct ‘sides’ that really exist.

    Looking forward to hearing more about your thoughts on this.

  3. kibrolv said

    i’m a both-endian myself:
    we seek meaningful student-teacher encounters (“reform”)
    about well-defined sets of math problems (“traditional”).

    but i can say “let me say what i really mean about math” (traditional)
    is a heck of a lot easier case to make than “quit making me punish
    these poor kids for stuff that isn’t their fault” (reform).

    so i end up “agreeing” with the trads because they’re able
    to use plainer language to speak more clearly about what
    they’re actually trying to do.

    which in many cases is break the teacher’s unions alas.
    of course they’re wrong about this. but frequently they’ll admit
    that this is their agenda. whereas no “reformer’
    ever admitted that they’re just trying to get on
    the gravy train before the balloon goes up
    but by god an awful lot of ’em are doing just that.

    so it’s a problem.

    not a very *interesting* one unless
    you’re right up in it i suppose.

    a lot of people think they know
    everything there is to know about it
    without having giving it a thought
    since highschool though.
    which is kind of interesting in itself.

  4. kibrolv said

    ed schools don’t carry anything like as much of the blame as ms. stotsky makes out of course. my own inclination has been to blame publishers and adoption committees. government of course from school boards on up to the fucking banks. don’t get me started.

  5. kibrolv said

    but the nctm _standards_
    *are* a disgrace. don’t get
    me wrong there.

  6. vlorbik said

    quasi-random jeremiad.

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