Weekly Math Updates
November 28, 2007
MAJOR IMPORTANT STUDY
I received a link to this study in the Journal of Developmental Psychology. The article is entitled "School Readiness and Later Achievement". Here is the abstract at the beginning.
Of course this is nothing really new to you if you've been reading these emails for a while. Socio-economics have been shot to heck by real world examples of principals and teachers who put forth the effort to teach low-SES kids. We've seen it in California and Maryland specifically. The most interesting thing for me, which isn't all that surprising, is that MATH, not reading, is the key indicator of future achievement. The need for a strong mathematical foundation early in life is the most important thing we can give our children.
English Being Destroyed
Over the last two weeks I've received a couple of very disturbing accounts of things that are happening in schools. We've already heard the story that goes, "kids don't need to memorize the times tables or learn long division because they'll always have a calculator." Here's it's parallel. This first story is from a parent in Jordan School District.
Here's another story from a parent in the Cache School District.
I know, I know, you're thinking," Oak, you've beat the math drum for so long, what are you thinking bringing up the need for proper English skills? We're a multi-cultural society now and it's racist for you to suggest that students today need to know English." :) It looks like not only math standards, but English standards must also be raised. Perhaps it's time to take the Core Knowledge sequence and make it our standard set of content...
It's really things like these stories that make you sit back and wonder what it's going to take for intelligence to ever return to the education community. What will it take to realize socialistic models of suppression of the intelligent, never did, and never will produce excellence in ANY child. Only by adopting a free market system where the bright can excel, can the slow learn to pick up the pace or forever be held behind BY THEIR OWN VOLITION. When people learn they have to compete for scarce resources (education and knowledge), they will step up to the plate, but as long as we reward stupidity with feel good grades, and make kids think they know something when they don't, we'll forever be set back in our country. Today's WMD is another tribute to this facet of American education.
If you are a newsletter subscriber and don't know what WMD's are, please visit the Weapons of Math Destruction Comics site.
Well, besides all the really obvious reasons I know most of you would argue for basic English skills, let me give you one other reason you might want to make sure your kids have good spelling skills. The porn industry is targeting kids through misspelled websites. Children innocently want to go to a site and then misspell it and wind up at a site they didn't intend to visit. Here's the article.
I know I've mentioned it before, but K9 Web Protection is a free filter that protects you and your kids from accidental exposures to bad sites. You can also put time limits as to when your family members can use the internet. If you don't have it, go get it at www.k9webprotection.com.
National Mathematics Advisory Panel
This set of recommendations was recently forwarded to me and contains some real gems about what we know and don't know concerning teacher content knowledge, incentives, and specialist certification. It ends with some recommendations. The first two are biggies:
California teacher offended by NEA's 'manipulative, dishonest' tactics
This is an eye opening whistle blower article about the NEA's deliberate attempts to encourage union representatives to lie to their members, slander school administrators, and misrepresent their goals to the public. Here's a few items from the article.
NEA donates thousands to pro-homosexual activist groups, pushes for 'hate crimes' law
Shocker again. The NEA promotes the homosexual lifestyle and agenda. A couple months back before the election I forwarded out the NEA agenda which is basically a communist-style "destruction of your children before they leave public education" type of plan. If you've been a fence sitter, be ready to home school your kids if you're not willing to get out and make a difference by being on the PTA, School Community Council, Board Member, or even just speaking at board meetings. You CAN make a difference.
Check out this page on the NEA website and note the statistics they quote. Pure garbage. 38% of students are harassed because of their sexual orientation??? Baloney. These people have an evil agenda and they'll lie, cheat, and steal to get it enacted. They are the most singularly organized and open communist agency in America today.
Universal Digital Library
Sorry for a pretty depressing newsletter. I'll end with a couple of interesting things. The Universal Digital Library is online with over 1.5 million public domain works available in a variety of formats. It's quite amazing. Go here to read an article that talks about it:
The library can be found here:
Cool Web Site - Global Incident Map
This is a really cool site...disturbing for all the bad stuff going on in the world, but a cool way to present to you what's happening and where. You get a world map and then specific icons show you the type of problem happening and if you hover and then click on an icon, you can get the article linked to that spot. Nice mashup work by someone.
Till next time ,
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