Implied concession or not…

I am reminded of Paul Halmos's great "automathography", I Want to Be a Mathematician on the Moore Method, often equated with the math avoidance of so-called "reform math".  Nothing could be further from the truth.  Attached (sorry for the crude scan) are a couple of pages that summarize his approach to mathematics instruction clear down to first-year Calculus where he was, at least for some students, highly effective.  A personal friend now deceased, eventually became a well-known seminary professor (Berkeley Union and then a permanent Visiting Distinguished Professor here at Fuller after his retirement) who started his life with a very strong bachelor's degree in physics from UT Austin with calculus from R. L. Moore.  He was so impressed that he credited Moore with his start as a top-notch academic researcher and maintained a lifelong correspondence with Moore.

As you can see, he was nothing close to the "not a sage on the stage but a guide on the side" wishful thinking but, in Halmos's words, "his personality dominated the room".  Only a very special kind of person can carry it off and don't try it without the "security blanket" of tenure.  The one tenure-track assistant professor who tried it at our campus was very lucky (only on special appeal to the dean) to not have had the following year be deemed his terminal year rather than another year toward eventual tenure.  En masse complaints to the chair during the quarter followed by record-low student evaluations at the end of the course.  Note the familiar cliché, "I hear, I forget; I see, I remember; I do, I understand."  It's all in what you mean by "doing".  Moore meant the real thing; not some phony imitation.  I have heard that in advanced topology classes he went even further than Halmos describes; he gave the words different names so that students couldn't "cheat" even if they wanted to.  They would have to understand the subject well enough to know how to read conventional books for proofs of his list of statements to be proved by students independently.

I never had the privilege of watching R.L. Moore at work, as did Halmos, but I did see U Chicago's Paul Sally run a demo class of his exceptional precollegiate class for Chicago-area students.  A wonder to watch and no doubt who was fully in charge every minute.  Amazingly, Everyday Math evolved from that but only after the ed-types took over and chased Sally, the original NSF grant PI, out entirely.


At 01:31 PM 4/5/2013, Greg Goodknight wrote:
By the generally accepted Godwin's Law of Nazi Analogies, I recognize Dr. Bishop as the clear winner after this forfeit performed by Chandy.

On 04/03/2013 08:06 PM, GS Chandy wrote:
Wayne Bishop posted  Apr 2, 2013 10:39 AM (the full post pasted below my signature for referenc):
That's right.  Objective evidence be damned; full speed >ahead.

1. I do not find evidence in support of your claim ("Objective evidence be damned; full speed ahead") in Richard Hake's original post.

2. I do find evidence of such an attitude ("Objective evidence be damned: full speed ahead") in your post.

I believe the above approach is more or less in line with the recommendations of the well known "PRINCIPLES OF PROPAGANDA" expounded by Josef Goebbels (see, for instance:

("Still Shoveling!")
Wayne Bishop posted  Apr 2, 2013 10:39 AM:
That's right.  Objective evidence be damned; full speed >ahead.
At 07:29 PM 4/1/2013, Richard Hake wrote:
Some subscribers to Math-Teach might be interested in a recent essay "Re: Direct Instruction rocks: Or does it?" [Hake (2013b)].  The abstract reads:

ABSTRACT: The conclusion of my response "Direct Instruction rocks: Or does it?" [Hake (2013a)] at < > to David Klahr's  (2012) "Inquiry Science rocks: Or does it?" at < > is (see the complete post for the references):
"A. Klahr's (2012) Fig. 1 histogram and the research of Chen & Klahr (1999) and Klahr & Nigam (2004) suggest that if one's goal is the enhancement of a process skill such as the "Control of Variables Strategy" (CVS) among elementary-school students then (s)he should probably consider utilizing Klahr's direct-instruction-like "Training-Probe (TP)" pedagogy rather than discovery-learning-like "No Training - No Probe (NTNP)" method with near zero teacher guidance.

B. Hake's (2012) Fig. 1 [histogram taken Hake (1998a)], its corroboration by others listed in Hake (2008), and the high positive correlation of post-test conceptual FCI and problem-solving MB tests, suggest that if one's goal is the enhancement of conceptual understanding and problem-solving ability among high-school or undergraduate students then (s)he should probably consider utilizing discovery-learning-like "Interactive Engagement" pedagogy rather than direct-instruction-like 'Traditional' pedagogy."
To access the complete 11 kB post please click on <>.

Richard Hake, Emeritus Professor of Physics, Indiana University
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REFERENCES [URL's shortened by <> and >accessed on 01April 2013.]
Hake, R.R. 2013a. "Direct Instruction rocks: Or does it?" APS News 22(4), April, online at < >. [Response to Klahr (2012).]
Hake, R.R. 2013b. "Re: Direct Instruction rocks: Or does it?" online on the OPEN Net-Gold archives at <>. Post of 01 April 16:00 -0700 to Net-Gold, AERA-K, and AERA-L. Evidently due to a change in LISTSERV software AERA-K and AERA-L no longer carry *HOT* Links such as those on Net-Gold! The abstract and link to the complete post are being transmitted to several discussion lists and are on my blog "Hake'sEdStuff" at < > with a provision for comments.

Klahr, D. 2012. "Inquiry Science rocks: Or does it?" APS News 21(11), December; online at < >.