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Topic: New Post at RME: Who Was George Polya's Intended Audience? (Or More Mathema
Replies: 9   Last Post: Sep 11, 2010 12:49 PM

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Michael Paul Goldenberg

Posts: 7,041
From: Ann Arbor, MI
Registered: 12/3/04
New Post at RME: Who Was George Polya's Intended Audience? (Or More Mathema
Posted: Jun 2, 2010 4:40 PM
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Please read the latest post at RationalMathEd.blogspot.com: "Who Was George Polya's Intended Audience? (Or More Mathematically Correct Lies)"

Excerpt: One of the more difficult aspects of wars, even ones where the main ammunition is words, is separating lies from facts. Every side in a war has a proclivity for propaganda. Inconvenient facts are brushed aside. Inaccuracies, petty or gross, become the coin of the realm. The Big Lie rules.

Of course, sometimes, it is possible to sort through the fog of war to arrive at what appears to be incontrovertible truth. It may take years, even decades, to find the facts, even when they are readily available to anyone who bothers to look in the right place for them. Sometimes, they've been staring everyone in the face for a very long time.

Thus, it is with no small embarrassment that I present a long-overdue and clearly definitive retort to one of the lies frequently promulgated a decade or so ago by Professor Wayne Bishop and some of his Mathematically Correct and HOLD anti-progressive allies, namely that George Polya's work on heuristic methods (from the Greek "???????" for "find" or "discover": an adjective for experience-based techniques that help in problem solving, learning and discovery) was intended only for graduate students or perhaps undergraduate mathematics majors, not for the general student of mathematics, and certainly not for high school students or younger children.

Of course, in the Math Wars, it is of the utmost importance to the counter-revolutionaries and anti-progressives that nothing that broadens access to mathematics be allowed to stand unchallenged or unsullied. Any curriculum, pedagogy, tool, etc., that is brought forward by reformers as "worth trying" must be smashed. That has been the tireless task of members of groups like Mathematically Correct and HOLD: to undermine any and all efforts to change what they view as immutable approaches to the teaching and learning of mathematics.

Read the entire post at: http://tinyurl.com/2bl5f7r



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