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Topic: re: beyond lecturing
Replies: 2   Last Post: Jun 30, 1995 6:59 PM

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Ronald A Ward

Posts: 298
Registered: 12/4/04
re: beyond lecturing/self sufficiency a la Lutemann
Posted: Jun 30, 1995 6:59 PM
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I require students in my college math classes to "read their text with
understanding," and I test them over that reading. I also seldom
"explicate" the text, preferring to supplement with materials that
complement the text but do not reiterate. [I make exceptions for material
I consider difficult reading--and I also provide some activities and
assignments to help develop critical reading skills along the way]

Relatively few students appreciate my approach until years later. They
are used to having math texts that are used primarily as a source of
homework exercises, and they have tended to read the narrative portion
only when they were having difficulty with an exercise and were trying to
find an example in the book "just like the exercise they were working."
They also discover that such an approach requires much more learning on
their part because now they have to actually read the text, still do
exercises and problems, and also understand all the extra
supplemental material. But a small number of students who are genuinely
interested in learning appreciate the extra knowledge that results and
some students do recognize the self-empowerment that comes with such
independent reading and comprehension skills.

Unfortunately, I find that some of my university colleagues either do not
require such reading, or at least they never test or probe a student's
understanding of the narrative portion of a text.

Personally, I could not have functioned as a professional math educator
had I not been a very critical reader. It remains an essential skill.

Ron Ward/Western Washington U/Bellingham, WA 98225

On Fri, 30 Jun 1995 wrote:

> How many teachers out there try to each their students to be self-sufficient?
> Why can't the students be taught to read the book or books and learn the
> subject on their own? I have found that students who learn to read and
> understand the math text go way beyond the rest of the class. Has anyone
> done much with this?
> Kent

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