Yesterday I heard some hair-raising things from a student teacher about high school students in a wealthy Litchfield County school. They can't do math. They can't think. They are unable to do Algebra I in ninth grade. They can't do the math in science due to a low math ability. I'm talking about asking to put the ml of the components of a fluid that totals 10 ml when the list of items submitted by the students goes higher than 10 or even 20 ml.
I blame this "new new math", the Chicago Math.
It's time to revisit this YouTube video "Math an Inconvenient Truth". This video discusses these two curriculums:
1. Everyday Mathematics
My town's public schools use Growing with Mathematics which my parent-friends tell me is the Chicago Math but also tries to cover the "old fashioned math". The parents I spoke to hate the text and the methods and the Lattice Multiplication and guessing games.
If you are a parent, you need to sit down when you have 15 minutes to watch this. Homeschoolers, watch this and ponder how you want your kids doing math.
But before watching, I want to direct you to a quote from the Everyday Mathematics teacher's manual as discussed and shown in this video. I've transcribed it here:
“The authors of Everyday Mathematics do not believe it is worth students’ time and effort to fully develop highly efficient paper and pencil algorithms for all possible whole number, fraction, and decimal division problems. Mastery of the intricacies of such algorithms is a huge endeavor, one that experience tells us is doomed to failure for many students. It is simply counter-productive to invest many hours of precious class time on such algorithms. The mathematical payoff is not worth the cost, particularly because quotients can be found quickly and accurately with a calculator.” from Everyday Matematics, 11.2.4 - Division Algorighms
Last year when my younger son was asking to try school the dealbreaker for me was I didn't want him exposed to this type of math. To me this is not REAL MATH. This was my number one concern regarding educational pedagogy of our public school. Second was my worry over what they'd do to his love of reading, and cringed at the idea of his only writing composition being to match the CMT formula writing style.
Okay, I've said enough. Settle back and watch this and let me know your thoughts.
To Learn More
Do an Internet search or YouTube search on these keywords to find criticisms or praise for these topics. You form your own opinion.
Chicago Math (style of this math)
Growing with Mathematics (curriculum)
Everyday Mathematics (curriculum)