Q&A #2193

Teachers' Lounge Discussion: Trailblazers Math Program

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From: Mika Yamamoto

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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