
Re: Is this an exceptionally hard set of questions to answer?
Posted:
Sep 30, 2002 7:53 PM


Several people, including myself, responded to this. Judging by your subject header, and the note below, I'm disinclined to put in the effort I put in before... but will at least give you the names of the materials suggested: For the student with difficulty learning math: Cuisinaire rods, and other math manipulatives of this type TouchMath Edmark's TouchMoney and Telling Time series PCI Catalog's Time Families, and various other math games with a reallife focus
Magi
Karl wrote:
>On 19 September 2002, I asked the participants in the sci.math and >misc.education newsgroups for advice on a subject I figured they >would know more about than I: what materials are best for math >learners of kindergarten to eighth grade level. Perhaps because of >the vagaries of Usenet newsgroup propagation, I never saw any >answers to the questions I askedbut it seems hard to believe >that no one here has anything to see in response to those >questions. Because the original thread has been retitled and is >fading off many Usenet servers, let me ask the questions again. > >Hi, this is an open invitation to hear opinions from any and all >of you who read this. I'm wondering what materials (textbook >series, and nontextbook books, manipulatives, software, games, or >whatever) you would recommend for young people learning elementary >(kindergarten through middle school) mathematics. I'll describe >some particular special cases I am interested in, but I am also >interested in the general case of a heterogeneous classroom or a >homeschooling family of unknown characteristics. I am a parent of >four young children (only two have reached school age) and I may >face any of the situations I list below, so I appreciate your >answers. > >SPECIAL CASE 1 (MATHEMATICALLY GIFTED CHILD) > >What, particularly, would you recommend for a learner who shows >evidence of unusually high ability in math? (Left unconsidered >here is whether "unusually high ability" comes from nature or from >nurture, and whether it is evidenced by standardized test scores, >advancement in grade placement, or some other proxy of ability.) >For the highestability young mathematics learner, what materials >are especially suitable for maintaining interest in and correct >understanding of mathematics, and for building a foundation for >later advanced study of math? Are there any materials that are >particularly UNsuitable for learners in this specialcase >population? > >SPECIAL CASE 2 (MATHDISABLED CHILD) > >What, particularly, would you recommend for a learner who shows >evidence of unusual difficulty in learning math? (Again, I am not >restricting this question to any particular kind of causation or >ascertainment, and you are welcome to consider subcases of either >low "general intelligence" or "specific learning disability" in >answering this question.) For the lowestability young mathematics >learner, what materials are especially suitable for building >understanding of mathematics and helping the learner to understand >and apply as much math in the "real world" of adult living as >possible? > >SPECIAL CASE 3 (MATHEAGER CHILD) > >What, particularly, would you recommend for a learner who shows >consistent, sustained, avid interest in learning mathematics >(irrespective of the learner's level of math ability)? For the >mosteager mathematics learner, what materials are especially >suitable for appealing to that intrinsic interest and using that >as a foundation for deeper learning of mathematics? Here I'm >especially interested in suggestions for materials beyond the >scope of school textbooks, and indeed in suggestions for >activities (math competitions, perhaps?) outside the scope of >schoolwork. > >SPECIAL CASE 4 (MATHAVERSE CHILD) > >What, particularly, would you recommend for a learner who shows NO >interest in learning mathematics, doubts the usefulness of math, >and would rather do almost anything else besides learning math >(again, irrespective of the learner's ability level)? For the >learner turned off by math, what materials are especially useful >for evoking interest in math and showing either an inherent >attractiveness of or a linkage between math and subjects the >learner is already interested in? > >GENERAL CASE > >What, particularly, would you recommend for a learner or group of >learners who have unknown membership in the specialcase >populations above? What would you recommend for a schoolteacher >teaching a school class of mixed ability and interest levels? What >would you recommend to a homeschooling parent who poses a question >online and doesn't identify his or personal math background in >much detail? In other words, what math materials might tend to be >optimal for the broadest range of special cases encountered in the >general population? Are any math materials that are wellsuited to >special populations BADLY suited to the general population? I >would be interested to know what math materials you would >recommend as having broadest usefulness and likely benefit, and I >wouldn't mind knowing what materials you do NOT recommend to >anyone, no matter what the learner's special characteristics. Are >some math materials actually harmful, worse than using nothing at >all? > >Thanks for any and all opinions you express, materials you >recommend, or comments you have on my questions. If you would like >to reach me by email, feel free to write to > >kmbunday AT earthlink DOT net > >and later I will anonymously ("a private correspondent said, '. . >.. '") digest private comments for the group. > >By the way, what is the scope of "elementary (K8) mathematics"? >What subjects (or more narrow topics) are surely included in >mathematics learners should learn by eighth grade? What subjects >(or topics) need not be learned by that age, or even SHOULDN'T be >learned by that age? > >Thanks for letting us all know your thoughts on this important >issue. > > >

