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Yes it is a tragedy
if people knew how to use maths they could have fun with it

posted by Azur on January 18, 2007 at 3:12 AM | link to this | reply

posted by star4sky5 on January 12, 2007 at 8:59 PM | link to this | reply

Our modern math wasn't like what you described. I would have been glad
if they could have drummed "the rules" into me because I can never remember them....  We had an advanced education system....

posted by WindTapper on January 10, 2007 at 9:32 PM | link to this | reply

I did not know they still made watches like that!

Actually, I see some differences in how my son learns math from the traditional way that I suffered through.

Ever watch the show Myth Busters? My son is really into it (he IS eight,) and it is starting to get on my nerves. They'll be doing some stupid experiment to "prove" or "disprove" a myth and I'll have to start grumbling about how they should have taken some calculus, physics, etc. or at least paid attention. Then they wouldn't even have to DO the stupid experiment, and they might even get the correct answer. Grrr.

posted by FactorFiction on January 7, 2007 at 4:39 PM | link to this | reply

Thanks, now I can blame my shortcomings in arithmetic on poor teaching methods...yeah, that was the problem!

posted by Holy_Grail on January 6, 2007 at 9:28 AM | link to this | reply

It's just not modern math...
When I was in junior college (1969 - 71) I had the quadratic equation drilled into me.  I had and have no idea what it's used for.  I think electrical engineers use it.  Math was the only class I ever fell asleep in.  Our instructor would say "I've framed this problem so it will make you think"...to which I would think, "I'd rather be doing anything else than this."  Oddly, I liked my physics class and helped out in the lab.

posted by food4thought on January 6, 2007 at 12:46 AM | link to this | reply

As an alumnus of the Columbia Math Program
I could not resist putting my two cents in.

Of course, it is the old arithmetic approach, as in the background to "Inchworm", that is at fault.  Excellent mathematic syllabi, such as "Columbia Math" from Teacher's College, Columbia University, have been successfully used, teaching theory and concepts, and then have been discarded.  I suspect the reason was the difficulty in getting teachers capable of teaching them.  Also, it was probably a bit embarassing for the state syllabus folks to have eighth graders with a firm understanding of functional analysis, linear algebra and finite group theory going into high school where the bulk of the student body was still being retaught the concept of a variable.

It is the tragedy of a 19th century educational system, designed to teach scriveners and counting house clerks their handwriting and arithmetic, refusing to be adapted to modern times when those occupations have long since been replaced by the computer.

Carl Peter

posted by cpklapper on January 5, 2007 at 8:25 PM | link to this | reply

Whacky
It is, and I don't know how to go about helping to fix it =(

And thanks! It has a scheduler and phone book AND calculator. That's hard core.

posted by Unidentified_Hacker on January 5, 2007 at 7:47 PM | link to this | reply

It's the tragedy of modern life too!
BTW Neat watch!

posted by Whacky on January 5, 2007 at 7:46 PM | link to this | reply

Mia
It's way totally cool!

posted by Unidentified_Hacker on January 5, 2007 at 7:39 PM | link to this | reply

Mysteria
Thanks! =) And yeah, I brought out the best for that picture! =P

posted by Unidentified_Hacker on January 5, 2007 at 7:39 PM | link to this | reply

Uni
That's a cool watch!

posted by MiaElla on January 5, 2007 at 6:41 PM | link to this | reply

The world is filled with atrocities~Public Schooling is just one of them.
You make many valid points...Nice Photo!

posted by mysteria on January 5, 2007 at 6:24 PM | link to this | reply

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