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Topic: Numberaid? IllinoisAnybody remember?
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Anne Wheelock

Posts: 41
Registered: 12/3/04
Numberaid? IllinoisAnybody remember?
Posted: Jul 5, 1995 11:10 AM
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>In the late 50s I was involved (as an elementary student) in some kind of
>experimental math program...........

I wonder if your school was connected to something called "Illinois Math"
that was funded in the 50s by Carnegie as a scholar-led curriculum
innovation that was meant to expose students to the ideas and modes of
thinking that were, then, seen as part of the work of real mathematicians.
This was based at the University of Illinois under the direction of Max
Beberman with the help of David Page who Peter Dow in his book _Schoolhouse
Politics_ (Harvard University Press, 1991) calls a brilliant teacher of
mathematics. Although Illinois Math was focused on high school, Page
apparently worked with elementary students and, according to Dow, he
overwhelmed mathematicians at one conference with a demonstration of how
well fifth graders could be pushed to think mathematically by a skillful
teacher. Page was an articulate spokesperson for the position that teachers
who knew mathematics well were likely to be able to teach it best to young

Perhaps others on this list can elaborate more about Illinois Math.

By the way, what makes this whole book interesting and useful is that it
reviews the history of curriculum reform of the 1950s - which involved
university-based educators - in a way that suggests lessons for
standards-based curriculum today.

Anne Wheelock
Boston, Massachusetts, USA

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