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Author Topic: Evolution of teaching Math in America  (Read 1520 times)

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Offline ElZorro

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  • Posts: 535
Evolution of teaching Math in America
« on: November 25, 2010, 10:36:04 AM »
Someone forwarded this to me and I thought it was cute...;)
 
Last week I purchased a burger at Burger King for $1.58. The counter girl took my $2 and I was digging for my change when I pulled 8 cents from my pocket and gave it to her. She stood there, holding the nickel and 3 pennies, while looking at the screen on her register. I sensed her discomfort and tried to tell her to just give me two quarters, but she hailed the manager for help. While he tried to explain the transaction to her, she stood there and cried.

Why do I tell you this?

Because of the evolution in teaching math since the 1950's:

1. Teaching Math In 1950's

 
A logger sells a truckload of lumber for $100. His cost of production is 4/5 of the price. What is his profit?


2. Teaching Math In 1960's

A logger sells a truckload of lumber for $100. His cost of production is 4/5 of the price, or $80. What is his profit?


3. Teaching Math In 1970's

A logger sells a truckload of lumber for $100. His cost of production is $80. Did he make a profit?


4. Teaching Math In 1980's

A logger sells a truckload of lumber for $100. His cost of production is $80 and his profit is $20.
Your assignment:  Underline the number 20.  :P


5. Teaching Math In 1990's

A logger cuts down a beautiful forest because he is selfish and inconsiderate and doesn't care about the habitat of animals or the preservation of our woodlands. He does this so he can make a profit of $20. What  do  you think  of this  way of making a living?

Topic for class participation after answering the question:

How did the birds and squirrels feel as the logger cut down their homes? (There are no wrong answers, and if you feel like crying, it's ok.)   ::)


6. Teaching Math In 2010

Un leñador vende una carga de madera por $100. El costo de la produccion es $80. Cuanto fue su ganancia? 
 

Offline wolfter

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  • Posts: 4,732
Re: Evolution of teaching Math in America
« Reply #1 on: November 25, 2010, 10:45:42 AM »
I'll be she could tell you how many grams are in an ounce....lol
Complacency is the enemy.  ;)  Challenge yourself daily for maximum  return on investment.

Offline ElZorro

  • Member
  • Posts: 535
Re: Evolution of teaching Math in America
« Reply #2 on: November 25, 2010, 10:48:30 AM »
I'll be she could tell you how many grams are in an ounce....lol

 :D :D :D

Offline Hoover

  • Member
  • Posts: 286
Re: Evolution of teaching Math in America
« Reply #3 on: November 25, 2010, 11:36:05 AM »
We are all getting stupider and stupider......... :-\
Infection date: March 16, 2010
20/05/10 - CD4 348  VL 58,000  Lymph nodes in jaw painful!  Antioxidants started.
01/06/10 - CD4 428  VL?
24/06/10 - CD4 578  VL 9,800
13/07/10 - CD4 620  VL?
04/09/10 - CD4 648  VL?
01/11/10 - CD4 710  VL?   CD8 972
16/12/10    CD4 738  VL?  CD8  896   
02/02/11    CD4 520 (month of parasites and new lab)
14/03/11 started Truvida and Sustiva (Efavirenz)
04/07/11 CD4 686 VL 75 CD8 588  41%
10/10/11 CD4 757  45%  VL UD

Offline MitchMiller

  • Member
  • Posts: 482
Re: Evolution of teaching Math in America
« Reply #4 on: November 25, 2010, 04:25:37 PM »
Well... nearly the identical thing happened to me a couple years ago... but clerk was about 55 year old.  She had already entered the dollar amount of cash tendered into the register before i had a chance to pull out the change... so when I handed her the change, she had to do the math in her head and couldn't rely on the amount the register was telling her to return to me.
 
Just so happened she WAS the manager.. and she was dumbfounded, then gave me an extra doller which I promptly returned to her... upon which her embarassment led her to chastise me for holding up the line!

Needless to say, the store, Mervin's, went out of business a few months later.

I think the problem is that our brains atrophy when we begin to rely on machines to do everything for us... like those registers just telling us how much change to give back.  I used to be a cashier when we had to do the work... and you always verbally count back the change from the total due to the total tendered.  Does anyone ever do that anymore?
« Last Edit: November 25, 2010, 04:31:11 PM by MitchMiller »

Offline Ann

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  • It just is, OK?
    • Num is sum qui mentiar tibi?
Re: Evolution of teaching Math in America
« Reply #5 on: November 25, 2010, 06:45:46 PM »
Years ago when I worked behind a bar, you were expected to 1. remember multiple orders, 2. add them up in your head as you were given the order and 3. promptly be able to ask for the exact amount owed before you ever went near the till. Once at the till, you had punch in the price of each individual drink, hit total and figure out your own change.

And it never seemed to matter how drunk a patron might be, if you made a mistake, they'd know!

Late this afternoon, I gave a lad in a shop £43.48 for an £28.48 grocery total. Seeing the two twenties in my hand, he jumped the gun and only entered 40.00. The £3.48 was also in my hand in change, so he had to figure it out for himself. It was taking him a while so I finally told him he owed me £15.00 to put him out of his misery. I probably could have gotten £25.00, he was so clueless. ;)

Because it all made me think of this thread, I had to bite the inside of my cheek to keep from laughing out loud. It's never a good idea to embarrass a young kid like that in this small town, because in another six or twelve months he's going to be turning up in my local and might decide to embarrass me as a payback. Definitely not outside the realm of possibility when I'm in the pub!  :D
Condoms are a girl's best friend

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"...health will finally be seen not as a blessing to be wished for, but as a human right to be fought for." Kofi Annan

Nymphomaniac: a woman as obsessed with sex as an average man. Mignon McLaughlin

HIV is certainly character-building. It's made me see all of the shallow things we cling to, like ego and vanity. Of course, I'd rather have a few more T-cells and a little less character. Randy Shilts

Offline Hellraiser

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  • Posts: 4,143
  • Semi-misanthropic
Re: Evolution of teaching Math in America
« Reply #6 on: November 28, 2010, 02:03:37 PM »
In an attempt to stay sharp I try to do as much math mentally as I possibly can.  When I'm tired though, bring on the calculators.

Offline GSOgymrat

  • Member
  • Posts: 5,052
  • HIV+ since 1993. INTJ
Re: Evolution of teaching Math in America
« Reply #7 on: November 28, 2010, 02:12:42 PM »
In an attempt to stay sharp I try to do as much math mentally as I possibly can.  When I'm tired though, bring on the calculators.

I'm really bad at mental math and always did poorly in those competitions in school. I also "write" in the air when someone asks me to spell something. Give me a pencil and paper and I'm fine but without being able to visualize it I struggle.

Offline Hoover

  • Member
  • Posts: 286
Re: Evolution of teaching Math in America
« Reply #8 on: November 28, 2010, 02:33:50 PM »
I used to be able to do math and even spell very well.
Now that I live with computers, my mind has gone to jello.
With that said, I always use spell/grammar check because I know my new limits!
In the business world, I am shocked how many messages we get from people at fortune 500 companies that apparently don't know how to use spell check.
I guess that is just life in the 21st century.
Infection date: March 16, 2010
20/05/10 - CD4 348  VL 58,000  Lymph nodes in jaw painful!  Antioxidants started.
01/06/10 - CD4 428  VL?
24/06/10 - CD4 578  VL 9,800
13/07/10 - CD4 620  VL?
04/09/10 - CD4 648  VL?
01/11/10 - CD4 710  VL?   CD8 972
16/12/10    CD4 738  VL?  CD8  896   
02/02/11    CD4 520 (month of parasites and new lab)
14/03/11 started Truvida and Sustiva (Efavirenz)
04/07/11 CD4 686 VL 75 CD8 588  41%
10/10/11 CD4 757  45%  VL UD

Offline mecch

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  • Posts: 12,156
  • red pill? or blue pill?
Re: Evolution of teaching Math in America
« Reply #9 on: November 28, 2010, 06:37:49 PM »
The joke is funny.  I like the 1990's part - which seems to continue to this day!

But as a college teacher I don't find any truth that young people are getting dumber.  

(Of course, they are the kids who make it to college. But its not the most elite college, just everyday quality place.)

I do think that reliance on machines could cause a decrease in basic skills, especially among the lessor educated.

I read great research about the speed and level that adults can learn a foreign language.  It studied thousands of immigrants to Canada who were learning English.  They researched everything to see if it could effect speed and level - gender, social class, race, maternal language, etc. - the only thing that showed a relation to slow acquisition and limited potential was amount of education.  People with the fewest number of years of school didnt learn as well or as fast. Also people with graduate diplomas didn't have an advantage.  The lesson was that maybe middle schooling is critical for adult success.  

As a teacher I have this feeling that children are often taught very well and something is going wrong more often in middle schools and high school education.  Maybe this is were all the distractions of technology and the barrage of information and stresses adolescents have to deal with these days is making a muck of things.

I see enough impressive ambition and bright minds every day, thank god, in my students so I dont get too cynical about the fact I also see a fair amount of scattered minds and lack of independence.

Im not sure that cashier wasn't capable of the math, rather she didnt have the spine to figure it out on her own.
“From each, according to his ability; to each, according to his need” 1875 K Marx

Offline Ann

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  • Posts: 28,140
  • It just is, OK?
    • Num is sum qui mentiar tibi?
Re: Evolution of teaching Math in America
« Reply #10 on: November 29, 2010, 07:56:00 AM »

I do think that reliance on machines could cause a decrease in basic skills, especially among the lessor educated.


Hope you don't teach spelling! ;D
Condoms are a girl's best friend

Condom and Lube Info  



"...health will finally be seen not as a blessing to be wished for, but as a human right to be fought for." Kofi Annan

Nymphomaniac: a woman as obsessed with sex as an average man. Mignon McLaughlin

HIV is certainly character-building. It's made me see all of the shallow things we cling to, like ego and vanity. Of course, I'd rather have a few more T-cells and a little less character. Randy Shilts

 


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