Weekly Math Updates

February 9, 2006

  • Deseret News 2/9/06 (Cedar Ridge Visit)
  • Articles
  • 7th grade math problem--test your kids
  • Caution
  • Illustrator/Artist

Deseret News Article from Yesterday's Visit

    I received a few emails from people that attended this meeting and although a few comments are in this article, from what I could tell the night was a disaster for the administration.  Good job to any of you that attended and shared your concerns.  I wish there was more room in the article for the whole picture of what happened.



Hi all,

    A busy couple weeks as you know.  Great things are happening.  We're almost to 5% of the district on the petition (4.81%).  We're down to needing 105 more children represented on the petition which is about 35 families.  We broke the 1000 household mark in all of Utah this week, with nearly all of them in Alpine, but we're grateful to those of you outside ASD that have signed as well.  I hope you'll tell people you know that we're not just trying to help Alpine but the whole state by changing our core standards.

    Well, just a couple of things.  I got sent a couple of great articles this week by petition signers (thanks again) which are great reads, especially the real life example of why fuzzy math breaks down and needs replaced.  Here's the articles and be sure to read to the end on the first one and at least to the top of the second page on the second.



    Lastly, here's a page that should knock the wind out of any educator.  If you are dealing with a difficult teacher or administrator, send them this page and ask for the independent studies that show fuzzy math has any validity.


7th grade math problem--test your kids:

    I got this from a petition signer last week.  It's a 7th grade math problem from pre-algebra, not the "Math 7" remedial math course.  I tested it on my kids and my 5th grader literally looked at the picture and gave the answer about a second later.  My 2nd grader got a 10-second explanation from me on ratios like "these two pictures are represented in this formula at the bottom.  Something is to 10 as 3 is to 5.  What is it?"  After maybe 5-10 seconds she gave the correct answer.  Welcome to Connected Math where kids get the opportunity to learn basic math all over again in fun visual ways.  Try it out on your younger kids and see what they say.

The diagram below illustrates the equivalence of two fractions. Find the missing numerator.
























  ?_ = 3

  10   5


    A gentle caution is in order.  I've been flooded by great emails over the last couple weeks since many of you have copied me on emails you've sent to the press and others.  Thank you so much for following through on that.  However, some of the letters have some typos or missing words that could easily be eliminated by running a spelling or grammar check before sending so please try to type your letters in a regular word processor so you can proof it and then copy/paste it into an email to send.  The letters will be more credible to the press and officials if you give a little attention to proofreading before sending...but again, the most important thing is to send them and I'm grateful you are.  It makes a huge difference to have this come from multiple people.

Illustrator/Artist wanted:

I have an idea for a cartoon I'd like someone to draw to help the problem be more visual for the public.  If you have good skills in this area such that you could help me out, please let me know.  I'm talking Far Side detail, not like Spider Man's detail.

Till next week,

Oak Norton


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