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How to Fix Our Math Education  NYTimes.com
Posted:
Aug 25, 2011 2:03 PM



I partly agree with the authors, but I think they have forgotten how they got to their current positions. What they suggest would probably be good for some students. They also argue too narrowly that traditional math is needed only by "professional mathematicians, physicists and engineers".
They also ask, "how often do most adults encounter a situation in which they need to solve a quadratic equation?" By coincidence, my cousin, a former math teacher, just yesterday was telling me about her daughter, who has a BA in English and two masters degrees, but who finally has recently become a welder.
Her daughter had called from work for help in calculating the length of a side of a regular octagon they needed to make for some job. The octagon had started out as a square with a side of 4.75" before isosceles right triangles were cut off to make the octagon. Basically, they needed to know how much to cut off.
As my cousin said, "Welders need to know a lot of math and science."
http://www.nytimes.com/2011/08/25/opinion/howtofixourmatheducation.html?nl=todaysheadlines&emc=tha212
Bobbi Eisenberg, Chairperson, UFT Math Teachers Committee



