
Re: Why?
Posted:
Oct 27, 2012 10:31 AM


On Thu, Oct 25, 2012 at 1:12 AM, Robert Hansen <bob@rsccore.com> wrote: > > On Oct 24, 2012, at 7:55 PM, Paul Tanner <upprho@gmail.com> wrote: > > See the links I gave to all those past posts of mine. > > > I did see the links, that is why we are talking about pretending to teach > children algebra. My question was, if the student can't see arithmetic, why > do you think they can see algebra? It appears that you are trying to use a > rote trick just to get the student through the topic, and all teachers > probably face this situation with students that struggle. However, they > pretend to teach algebra during algebra, not arithmetic. Should I call you > lesson "pretending to teach arithmetic" instead? > > Bob Hansen
You may not be aware of Caleb Gattegno's way of teach "algebra first" using colored rods (Cuisenaire) and colorcoded letter expressions.
The expressions could be concretely tied to the blocks and the letters were mnemonics for colors. I'm not sure if color blindness was a barrier.
He had empirical / measurable success with his system, published a series of books, did studies and was influential.
Gattegno founded the equivalent of the NCTM in the UK. He was not an unknown.
http://www.thefullwiki.org/Caleb_Gattegno
I think if you're looking at 4th grade materials and seeing lots of algebra, you are maybe seeing some of Gattegno's influence, even if the approach is different.
You may scoff at the idea, but remember the human brain is capable of mastering complete human languages at that age.
I don't think we really know what humans are capable of, given intelligently designed learning materials.
Kirby

