A news report stated that a majority of 4th and 8th grade students are not proficient in math skills. Our government is working to fund schools but we see little results. What do you think, read my blog. I am interested in your comments.
we are only teaching children how to pass state tests, so they can advance and the district get the money. No child left behind means, memorise the test foget how to work the problems!
Look, teachers College criculums focus on education techniques and general elective courses only, you can not expect a bachelors degree person with only six hours of basic college math required to get by for the Education degree, to really understand or teach theory of algebra, geometry or trig, much less calculus.
The kids are being asked to work problems the teacher can not do!
Thats why sylvan learning centers and other businesses like them are getting rich, the kids have to pass the ACT to have a chance at a future, and those company's can do what the teachers union can not do, and is not concerned about doing!
Its about funding and raises, and getting a kid to pass a state test and move them on reguardless, not real teaching. The kids end up loosing.
The cirriculums are changed, The grade structures are eliminated, a try is considerd a pass! No real challange to learn. It is a joke. Show up, do something, get a pass and move on...Next!
In San Antonio they have an English class called Spanglish, it is ok to mix spanish and english in a sentence! What is that?
In Tennessee they have changed grading in some of the poor districts to say they will evaluate each child seperately and except their best?
Not make them learn and accelerate, just what ever thay can do is their best? And Thats a pass? Thats Crap!
They can only read a half of a sentenance, but if thats their best...its a pass! These poeple are totaly out of control.
I am not suprised. Since our culture has been shifted to maximizing profits at all costs and nurtering children's heads with all this marketing bulk, how can we expect that someone will find science interesting? After all, when there is no demand, supply decreases..
Don't get me going on this one. I am in California and finally decided to pull my children out of the school system to home school. It is unbelievable how the quality of our education has improved in the last year. Yes, children are being taught "to standards" and yes, the teachers I have interviewed are frustrated because they are no longer allowed to "teach". Even as homeschoolers, we are required to take the standardized tests once a year. I am happy to report that we recieved high honors. But the degradation that is taking place in the schools will be reflected in our children's ability to compete in an international market place. I blog extensively about these issues and offer advice to those considering homeschooling. I just signed up for hubpages under kimbaustin but don't have much posted there yet, but it is coming.
In addition to what has already been said, I think the way math is taught from the beginning of a child's entry into school is important. How the fundamentals of number sense are introduced matters. Something as simple as place-value and its manipulation for executing mental math is underestimated in many American text books. Equally important is the ability to apply mathematical computation skills to "real" world problem solving, i.e. word problems, which require multiple steps to solve.
I see no real funding to remedy the lack of proficiency in math skills. If anything, funding for education in California is evaporating at a rapid rate.
I am not surprised, at least if I use my children's schools as an example. Reasons:
We teach to the test instead of teaching concepts. (The way schools get funding is high test scores. WIth low test scores the money is pulled, which is counter-intuitive, yes?)
We teach from textbooks and rarely stray. Children learn differently but teachers no longer have artistic license in the classroom to modify the lesson to fit the needs of the students. Also, teachers put in a huge percentage of their time doing assessments of their students instead of teaching.
The teacher's union protects the good teachers and bad teachers alike. We have teachers that should never have been hired, let alone tenured. Example: One teacher came to school drunk on several occasions and she was kept on because alcoholism is a disease. (Yes, it is, but it's not conducive to being an elementary ed teacher.)
The latest thinking of making the school days and school year longer so our children can learn more and be competitive with other countries is ignoring the real issues. The best metaphor I can come up with with is like taking a really out-of-tune piano with some missing keys and telling the piano student: "You are not practicing enough! If you work hard and put in more hours of practice you will sound better." It's not going to happen until the piano is tuned and missing keys replaced.
Regarding the government funding our schools: where? how? I'm not even sure where my tax dollars go anymore. (I'm on the West Coast. Can you tell? I don't believe East Coast has these problems.)
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