Date: Jun 24, 2013 7:14 PM
Subject: Re: Article In Newsday about Algebra Regents Exam
I am a dinosaur. Not quite sure which type, but definitely a dinosaur.
When I took the regents (let's not even talk about the year), we didn't
have calculators. It wasn't that we weren't allowed to use them - they didn't
I had to find logarithms using charts. The same for trig values. Does
that mean that the test was harder?
Everyone, and I mean everyone, should go back into the archives at
JMAP.org, and look at some of the tests from the late sixties and early seventies.
(Oops - I may have just dated myself.) Most of those questions made sense.
If you didn't know the equation for a circle you could leave out that
question. Students were able to demonstrate what they knew, not what they hadn't
learned. Long questions offered students many 'point' opportunities.
As someone else on the listserve said, this test has become a reading test
as much as a math test. I remember when students who were poor in reading
could still excel in math. That is no longer the case.
I applaud the author of the article, DANIEL BRENNER, for recognizing that
something needs to be changed. I don't know what the PARCC exam has in store
for us, but it can't be any worse (I hope) than what we are currently
dealing with. Students need to demonstrate their knowledge. The regents, in
their current format, takes that opportunity away from them.
:::getting off my soapbox:::