March 19, 2014

The New Math

It is obvious to many parents that something is off in their children’s math classes: Instead of learning math facts and standard methods, their kids must use cumbersome procedures, find multiple ways to do simple tasks, and explain in writing what they have done. In general, they need more help than their parents did when they were in school.

For two decades now parents and children have been collateral damage in a struggle that has come to be known as the “math wars”. Opinion is sharply divided on how best to teach K-12 math. The tension is between conventional, or traditional, instruction versus what is known by various names including “reform math” (to proponents), or “fuzzy math” (to critics).

Reform math differs from the conventional approach in many ways. To help parents ascertain whether their children are being exposed to reform math-borne illnesses, we have set out a brief guide to key symptoms of a reform math approach.
Read the rest of this illuminating article here.

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