> DOMENICA my dad was the only teacher in a one room > school in Bylands Victoria Australia in the 1960s. He > was one of the first to use Cuisennaire rods. I > believe much more of math can be taught in parallel > than serial alone. Why wait until you are 13 to > understand something a six year old can understand? > My big sister hung around my Dad's school and learnt > so much from the older kids. (She in turn taught me > pythagoras in a tent on a camping holiday.) Kid to > kid transmission can work, yet not when a system is > involved. (Maybe I should ask more children how THEY > would simplify arithmetic?)
There is no reason why the teaching of arithmetic should not be an enjoyable and valuable experience that contributes to the intellectual development of students. The following is a priceless example of the fascinating wonders, which last a lifetime, that one can experience, starting in elementary school.
"I was very quick at math. I could quickly grasp any problem they threw at me and solve it in my head. I often stood in for Lydia Mikhailovna when she had to go into the city or run her own errands. She trusted me to conduct the math class. I taught basic arithmetic to the other children." [N. S. Khrushchev, "Khrushchev Remembers: The Glasnost Tapes," Little, Brown and Co. (1990) pp. 5-6.]
This is in sharp contrast with the rubbish that is stunting the minds of so many American students today.