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Topic: MathTeachers?
Replies: 31   Last Post: Apr 15, 2013 1:17 AM

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GS Chandy

Posts: 6,886
From: Hyderabad, Mumbai/Bangalore, India
Registered: 9/29/05
Re: MathTeachers?
Posted: Mar 29, 2013 11:55 PM
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Kirby Urner posted Mar 28, 2013 10:00 PM:
>
> On Thu, Mar 28, 2013 at 5:45 AM, Robert Hansen
> <bob@rsccore.com> wrote:

> >
> >
> > On Mar 28, 2013, at 1:43 AM, Joe Niederberger

> <niederberger@comcast.net> wrote:
> >
> > Neither party knew f&ck about exp as far as I can

> tell.
> >
> >
> > Maybe they learned about exp from Desmos. :)
> >
> > It isn't just banks, it is everywhere. I shouldn't

> complain I guess, because it means that if you are
> technically savvy in these things, you are in demand.
> You and the green card holders.

> >
> > Bob Hansen

>
>
> ... which brings up the fact that, actually, there
> e are very strong
> disincentives to having a population knowing math too
> well.
>
> In the dark ages, the church bureaucrats did
> everyone's taxes and
> executed people's wills, kept the books for everyone.
> Copernicus, a
> church functionary, had a job like this, even while
> he worked in the
> background on dogma-overturning ideas.
>

<snip>
It also leads us to wonder about how similar is that attitude in the 'dark ages' of church bureaucrats to the current attitudes of some amongst us who claim that simple math is something that is beyond the ken of roughly 60-75% of our population - and that it should therefore not be taught at all to them.

Some of us, on the other hand, believe that a basic 'number sense' is more or less inherent in all humans - and that the fact that 60% more or students come out of school fearing/loathing math is mainly on account of an nonsensical philosophy of 'behavioralism' subscribed to the teachers/or those who design the math education systems.

(By this we do NOT claim that all of us have the intellectual powers of Einstein, or the other great minds amongst us - there is huge variation in the math abilities of all humans. However, it is clear beyond any manner of doubt that simple high-school math is well within the abilities of any normal child. Those who deny this are actually serving only their own 'political agenda').

That is to say, if the teachers in the system are quick to 'put down' those who may find some difficulty in learning math (the way it is conventionally taught in schools) - then those students are likely to come out of school fearing/loathing math.

I observe that math is, I understand, conventionally taught 'behavioralistically', if I may invent a term). I am of the firm belief that we would do well to o understand just how children may actually do their 'learning'.

See, for instance, Piaget's theories of cognitive development which, I (and several others) believe make a lot more sense in regard to the way children (or for that matter, adults) learn. Check out, for example:

-- Wikipedia at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Piaget%27s_theory_of_cognitive_development;
-- also 'Simply Psychology' - http://www.simplypsychology.org/piaget.html;
-- "Applying Piaget?s Theory of Cognitive Development to
Mathematics Instruction" http://math.coe.uga.edu/tme/issues/v18n1/v18n1_Ojose.pdf
-- or the attachment herewith "How a child learns".

GSC



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