More Kids Can’t Do Math: Our Kids – Our Teachers – New Math – Ridiculous!

In August I posted on the waivers the Obama administration is issuing to the many states which, after 13 years, have still not prepared their students to comply with the No Child Left Behind’s math requirements. I asked, are our student’s really so stupid? Last week, I noticed a lot of visitors to that article, and discovered that it was assigned homework for 5th graders.  See a mind-boggling video on teaching methods below. SEE AN IMPORTANT UPDATE ON CURRENT LEGISLATION BELOW (green text)

The waivers are still offered. The question remains, are student’s really so stupid or is the teaching just poor? There is another question to consider: Are teachers forced to teach methods that prevent proper teaching and adequate learning?

Grumpy Opinions has an article up dated September 2011, explaining the new math with a video that will astonish you. I no longer have children in K-12 so I am not the best judge of how our children are instructed in math, but I bet parents who currently have elementary-aged children may not know the depth of the absurdity of the methods taught across our Nation’s public schools.

Grumpy (please read it and his story of a discussion with his grandson and how a teacher handled “new math”):

Over the years I’ve heard people complain about the lack of very basic skills kids have when they finish High School. Educators have demanded and gotten more money, smaller class sizes and the latest and greatest in modern educational tools. The result is a lower quality finished product than we had fifty years and hundreds of billions of ago. Now we’ve gotten to the point that everyone is blaming everyone, the parents blame the schools and the teachers, In turn the schools and the teachers blame the parents.

Every year the experts come up with a new solution, but it will cost money. Somehow the experts don’t get blamed– they just get more money out of the deal.. Before we go any farther, take a look at the video.. The narrator gets much better as she gets into her subject, she’s not so good at first.

The video takes some time to watch, but if you care about a child’s public school education, I think you will find it worthwhile. Keep in mind that the teaching methods in the video are designed for 5th graders. We cannot always know what goes on the in the classroom. Versions of “New Math” have been around for years. The question is: why do we need it?

UPDATE 8-7-11: Grumpy, who is quoted in this article just left the following heads-up on current information to approve and renew No Child Left Behind.

“Maggie, tomorrow the there will be a Senate hearing to discuss reaffirming No Child Left Behind, the Bill is 800 pages long with a 1000 pages of amendments, committee members were handed the bill less than 48 hours before it was scheduled to be voted on.  Rand Paul insisted on a hearing, otherwise it would have been voted and approved without anyone looking at it.. Paul had wanted a full hearing, with teachers, parents and principals… According to Sandra from Grumpy Educators, instead of that, they have a lobbyist from Pearson Testing scheduled.

Pearson is the largest standardized testing company in the country… Since Pearson has made a fortune of the mandatory testing from NCLB and since it will make several tons money if the new and improved version (with more tests) is passed he’s not exactly an objective witness.  But he’s an “expert” so he’s the guy the Senate will hear..  In reality he’s a lawyer and a very well paid salesman.

What teacher has time to absorb 1800 pages of new laws, plus the regulations the DoEd with add to enforce the law?  The legislators who will pass the law don’t know what’s in it, but we expect our teachers to.. Get the salespeople masquerading as experts out of it and let out teachers teach..”

This is a good time to call your legislator.

Linked at The Lonely Conservative who had her own math session with her son tonight.

Demonstration of how your children are taught Math (video)

Other questions:

1) Why do we tolerate the necessity of remedial classes in universities before a student can actually begin his/her college studies?

2) Is the math that you and I learned still taught anywhere?

3) Has there been any backlash coming from parents who see the teaching methods as ridiculous and harmful?

Posted by Maggie @ Maggie’s Notebook

  • Maggie, tomorrow the there will be a Senate hearing to discuss reaffirming No Child Left Behind, the Bill is 800 pages long with a 1000 pages of amendments, committee members were handed the bill less than 48 hours before it was scheduled to be voted on. Rand Paul insisted on a hearing, otherwise it would have been voted and approved without anyone looking at it.. Paul had wanted a full hearing, with teachers, parents and principals… According to Sandra from Grumpy Educators, instead of that, they have a lobbyist from Pearson Testing scheduled.

    Pearson is the largest standardized testing company in the country… Since Pearson has made a fortune of the mandatory testing from NCLB and since it will make several tons money if the new and improved version (with more tests) is passed he’s not exactly an objective witness. But he’s an “expert” so he’s the guy the Senate will hear.. In reality he’s a lawyer and a very well paid salesman.

    What teacher has time to absorb 1800 pages of new laws, plus the regulations the DoEd with add to enforce the law? The legislators who will pass the law don’t know what’s in it, but we expect our teachers to.. Get the salespeople masquerading as experts out of it and let out teachers teach..

    Sorry I got so long winded

    • Grumpy, I added your comment to the text of the article. If that is not okay, just let me know and I’ll take it down. Excellent and depressing information. Thanks so much.

  • I wasn’t able to help my son with his fifth grade math tonight. I was able to check it to make sure he came up with the correct answers. But he told me they aren’t allowed to do math the way I do it. Unbelievable.

  • I have one word for you and your readers – homeschool. Or is that two words? Hang on – let me do the math…

    • Big smiles Adrienne, these days I’m assuming many mothers are forced to work. I’ve been watching John Stossels Stupid in America (it has played over and over and over). I watch it while working on the computer. Fascinating. In New Orleans there is some very emotional stories about how charters schools have sprung up, and are doing better than anything New Orleans has ever had. Parents – so grateful if they can get their child in one of them.

  • Pingback: Only a Mental Case Would Think Teaching ‘Mental Math’ is a Good Idea | The Lonely Conservative()

  • The new common core math standards have zero supporters from the mathematics world…no math teachers and no math scholars. Professor Milburn was the only university scholar on the common core math standards development committee and he refused to sign the final product.

  • I’m of the generation that New Math first was imposed upon. I was unable to do the New Math. In fact nobody can do it. It was created to destroy the ability of a child to do basic Arithmetic. In fact New Math was a subject of a satirical song in 1967: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8wHDn8LDks8

    Teach your child the correct way to do math…disregard what the idiot teacher says.

  • Maggie, I can’t think of a single reason to object, I wrote the comment for people to read, more people will see it if it’s posted in two places. tell you the truth I’m a little flattered

    Besides, I’ve never considered comments left on someone’s else’s site proprietary.. and getting quoted and linked is a honor