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Topic: Excessive Equality
Replies: 13   Last Post: Sep 19, 2012 9:02 AM

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kirby urner

Posts: 1,638
Registered: 11/29/05
Re: Excessive Equality
Posted: Sep 11, 2012 12:32 PM
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On Mon, Sep 10, 2012 at 6:41 AM, Haim <hpipik@netzero.com> wrote:
> Well, yes, but Mr. Vigdor does not state it exactly right. The root of the problem is coercion. We must stop forcing people, who lack the talent or the interest for mathematics, into mathematics classes.
>


I think focusing on coercion is not a bad idea. This blog post struck
a chord with some people:

http://edudemic.com/2012/08/how-one-teaching-practice-ruined-math-for-students/

As I posted in our faculty lounge on Facebook:

"I consider this an analogy for how pushing cohorts of students to all
speed along at the same pace, set to a tempo / calendar, may be
harmful and currently [name of school] offers a choice to step away
from the tread mill and self pace for a change. Falling off the rails,
needing an intervention, is one thing, but just taking one's time,
doing lots of study / research they don't need to tell us about, is
one of the joys of atemporal / asynchronous learning."

But nor do I favor a "one strike you're out" approach when it comes to
STEM and/or mathematics (whether analog or digital).

Say you're a tom boy (stereotype / cliche) and want nothing more than
to pitch your tent, strike a fire, and do surveying and astronomy.
You have bandwidth, sophisticated gear, and you hike an average of 10
miles a day. If you were imprisoned behind a desk, forced to answer
multiple choice questions and listen to a teacher drone, you would
just wither and die. You'd be in prison.

And guess what: even the math wouldn't be as good, as that "math in
the wild" (customized for tom boys, and boys too) is actually quite
high level, with lots of geometry and trigonometry. 'Divided Spheres'
by Edward Popko is one of our primers.

http://www.amazon.com/Divided-Spheres-Geodesics-Orderly-Subdivision/dp/1466504293

Privileged boys from snooty families would hate public school and all
the teasing and innuendo. Not their fault to be richie rich. The
private military academy in picturesque New England, with Fall
fashions, would be a second chance, and maybe a third as well, between
trips to Europe and whatever.

Compare that to: love this prison of a school, or eat dirt off the
streets. Who is suffering from "coercion" in this picture?

Just saying: if you don't want a nation of spoiled brats, then don't
hire so many. If you're not in the military, remember not to take
orders (uphold your end of the bargain: if free to, live free, and if
not, then fight to).

Kirby

Related:
http://mathforum.org/kb/thread.jspa?forumID=206&messageID=7321419
http://mathforum.org/kb/thread.jspa?forumID=206&messageID=7257276



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