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Topic: Re: meaningful standards (fwd)
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DoctorCHEK@aol.com

Posts: 67
Registered: 12/6/04
Re: meaningful standards (fwd)
Posted: May 30, 1995 5:52 PM
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Gary Martin writes:
>Steve: The question that I have with the Basics idea is... When does
>tomorrow come? When do the specifics finally appear? In other words,
>students learn whole numbers so they can do fractions, fractions so they
>can do algebra, algebra so they can do precalculus, precalculus so they
>can do calculus, ad infinitum. I have heard calculus teachers say, don't
>worry about understanding, they'll get that in real analysis. Just
>wondering... Gary Martin, Univ. of Hawaii


Yes....we do, indeed, need to learn fractions in order to do algebra
etc.....but while learning fractions (for later algebraic use) there is
nothing wrong in solving problems that rely only upon the use of fractions
TODAY. The way I see it.....1)we show a kid how to add two fractions with
unlike denominators....then 2)we let him try a couple himself....then 3)we
ask him something like..."one third the atmosphere of Mars is hydrogen and
one fourth the atmosphere is carbon dioxide...what fractional part does this
represent?". Then 4) the kid goes onto algebra knowing fractions and can now
solve fractional equations with little difficulty when the topic
arises....but in the mean time he also can solve Mars problems today.

Harvey Becker






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