Date: Oct 25, 2012 2:17 PM
Author: Paul A. Tanner III
Subject: Re: Why?

On Thu, Oct 25, 2012 at 5:02 AM, Robert Hansen <> wrote:
> On Oct 24, 2012, at 11:47 AM, Paul Tanner <> wrote:
> I suspect that you will show the same type of hostility to such ideas
> as these that make things so much easier and quicker for so many
> people, the same hostility I have received from so many in terms of
> making it easier and quicker to perform various skills.
> This is because your critics (including myself) don't view math as a
> collection of rote tricks to be taught "easier and quicker". Their view of
> teaching arithmetic involves a true sense of arithmetic being transferred
> from teacher to student. They view "pretending to teach algebra" as
> superficial and damaging to that sense. They know that without the sense,
> the student will be unable to apply any of it.
> You did mention struggling students and grades. I have tutored students in
> algebra before and had to pretend, but these were not students working on
> some math intensive degree. Algebra was a requirement and the last math
> class they would ever take in their life (maybe with a pretend statistics
> class as well). That does change things. By hook or by crook you try to get
> them through the course, so that they can go on with what they are really
> interested in.
> Is this what you are talking about?

My reply can be found here:

"Easier and quicker methods for algebra - rote tricks? (was Re: Why?)"