Q&A #2193

Teachers' Lounge Discussion: Trailblazers Math Program

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From: Mika Yamamoto <mikayama@gmail.com>
To: Teacher2Teacher Public Discussion
Date: 2008101804:46:29
Subject: Trailblazers if fabulous

My daughter went through the trailblazers program, and she has a
better understanding of mathematics than I ever will. We moved, and
she was put in the gifted program in the new district. The way the
district does it, the gifted program is really just an accelerated
program. For this reason, she missed a year of traditional math.
However, because she understood how to think mathematically, she did
fine, and the next year, they put her in the Excel program, which
moved her up another year. I am a teacher who taught Trailblazers as
well. I understand that it's frustrating for parents because it is not
the way we learned math, so it's hard to help. Also, it's hard for
parents to measure development. But I promise you, in the long run,
conceptual understanding is so much more useful than math facts. I am
Japanese, and I went through the Kumon program, and I hate it. It
teaches kids that math = worksheets, as opposed to math = thinking. So
the Kumon program may make you feel more comfortable, but it has
nothing to do with math.

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