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Topic: Teaching Algebra
Replies: 25   Last Post: May 10, 2000 2:26 PM

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Guy Brandenburg

Posts: 714
Registered: 12/3/04
Re: Teaching Algebra
Posted: May 8, 2000 8:22 PM
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One interesting question: what has happened to Escalante's former students? Did
they at least continue doing math or science? I have heard anecdotally that they
did not. Don't know if that is true or not, but if it is, it's sad.
Guy Brandenburg

"Barron, Alfred [PRI]" wrote:

> Jaime Escalente's story is well told in both the Mathews' book and the movie.
> It's probably the only school movie not involving a football or HS prom as its
> high point, or with East LA kids not involving a knifing or drug o.d. As for
> his secret, as he put it "ganas". Roughly translated into English - the 'urge'
> or 'desire' to do something. Though perhaps, it's more laced with passion,
> that is the passion to want to learn (and
> teach.)

I remember.

> Now maybe that's a bit hard for most to swallow, but then again, it worked for
> this guy. After all, he got these kids up to speed and after a while had them
> doing calculus. Not bad for a poor district. So when people challenge me on
> algebra for all 8th graders, I think of this guy and remember what he did.

Well, he didn't do it for everybody. That was beyond him. Just a much larger
subset of the school population than anybody else. (Nothing to sneeze at, mind
you, but not _everybody_.)

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