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Topic: Drill and Kill

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Subject:   RE: Drill and Kill
Author: LFS
Date: Jun 11 2011
I hesitate before participating in this discussion because I think I will be
shot down, but it seems to me that one should not be completely opposed to drill
and kill. Drill and kill has its place.
Do not for a moment think that I am condoning excessively long or stupid
worksheets. (35 years ago, a fellow student and I got so sick of doing trig
identities that we wrote up a 100 step identity and gave it to our teacher on
the pretext that we couldn't solve it.)

But, I am a firm believer in "all things in moderation". Kids do need to
practice math skills. Otherwise they get to college where basic manipulative
skills and knowledge of essential formulas must be second nature - particularly
if they plan to study STEM subjects and they are not. I am appalled at the
continually decreasing skills of incoming college students. So definitely I do
not think one should completely discard worksheets. However, there should be
guidelines - the first being that the teacher has to do the worksheet herself
before giving it out - completely, with all the steps that she requires and then
multiply her time by 3 to see how long it will take an average student. I am
sure others have good guidelines.

I like my kiddies to check their work with technology, e.g. because that has the double benefit of  getting them
to check their work and in a particularly useful way.

Anyway - a little theory (M), a little kill and drill (Tu), some applications to
real life (W), some review/testing (Th) and some exploration (F). Everything in

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