Friday, June 25, 2010

Quotes of the Day

Some freshmen do not know that “one-half and .5 represent the same number,” said Dennis Piontkowski, chairman of the mathematics department. “We don’t want to keep students in math classes forever, but you can’t just snap your fingers and bring them up to college level.”
and then too...
Students are leaving high school with a diploma, but “most are testing at middle-school reading comprehension” and many at elementary-school level, said James SauvĂ©, an English department instructor in charge of revising the remediation classes.
The remediation should be addressing 'how to be an effective learner' instead of explaining that .5 = 1/2. If a student had effective learning skills, he/she would have a command of basic skills before entering college.

And students should know that education takes work and failing is an option.

Thank you The Bay Citizen.

Monday, June 21, 2010

Grade Inflation

This is one of the ways grade inflation starts.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Face Memory Game

It was interesting to wander around the site and check out the different memory tests.

I will be using some of the games to help my students learn memorization strategies, specifically for addition and multiplication facts given that surprisingly many high school clients do not know these facts.

My elderly clients often have trouble remembering new facts, especially in regards to new technology. "Why on earth would you click on the Start Up button to turn your computer off?", was one of the comments I heard. There are physical changes that occur in the brain as humans age that make it more difficult for many people to learn new things, so it is not surprising that it takes some practice to learn how to program TIVO.

On the other hand, my teenage clients are able to remember all sorts of facts: phone numbers, how to use the many functions of their graphing calculators and cell phones, how to download and keep track of thousands of songs, and how to manage their social networking pages yet these same students cannot remember the product of 6 and 7. Even more disturbing is the fact that a number of the parents are likely to tell me that their children are incapable of memorizing their math facts rather than admit that their child might be a bit lazy or unmotivated to do the work.

Memorization takes work. And some memorization, such as math facts, may be tedious and unpleasant work. It has been my experience that most of the students lacking math facts are UNWILLING to do that work.

feed count