Common Core is tangled

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I have seen Common Core arithmetic instruction videos for subtraction and multiplication, and I view them as a crime!

Teachers who teach subtraction and multiplication to elementary-school children this way should be placed in public stocks, and the students and their parents supplied with rotten eggs and rotten cabbage to throw at them. Colleges of education that taught future teachers to teach this way should have their doors wrapped shut with crime-scene tape!

I have a master’s degree in mathematics, and I will admit that the number line is an important concept that links geometry and algebra, and the lattice method works. But these have no place in an elementary school. It does not matter that students are allowed to use calculators and will use these concepts only in theory and not reality. Each student should be able to do the arithmetic on paper and use the calculator as a tool only for efficiency and speed.

Our arithmetic is based on the decimal (base-10) system. Elementary students must be taught the structure of a decimal number with hundreds, tens, units on the left of the decimal; and tenths and hundreths on the right. Other number bases are important, but that also is a subject for higher-level work.

My favorite example is “one plus one equals one zero” (1+1=10). This is base-2, and allows us to use digital devices such as calculators, computers, smart phones, etc. Teaching this to a normal elementary student also should be a crime!

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gaflyboy 05/12/14 - 12:08 pm
Here! Here!

Every day, I see a new example of this ridiculous 15 step method of adding 14 + 7.

But the math methods are but one aspect of what's wrong with Common Core. People, parents, need to step up and put a stop to this before it's too late.

More than a dozen states are considering dropping out and a couple already have. Indiana is already being threatened by the Obama administration with funds being withheld. Other states can surely expect the same.

It's not only time to drop Common Core; it is time to eliminate federal Department of Education. Let states keep and spend their tax dollars in their states, instead of sending it to DC and begging for some of it back!

Bodhisattva 05/12/14 - 04:22 am
Yet another plan the GOP was all for until Obama was for it

Common Core was developed by The National Governors Association, not the feds, and the right wing thought it was the best thing since sliced bread until Obama announced it support for it. Such extreme lefties such as Mike Huckabee, Jeb Bush, Bobby Jindal, and Georgia's own Sonny Perdue supported Common Core. Then Obama mentioned he supported it and Glenn Beck, Michelle Malkin, Fox News, and the usual right wing propaganda machine went into full tilt making up their usual craziness about the program. Just like Reagan and GHW Bush were the first to intoduce cap and trade and had the backing of pretty much every GOP Congressman and Senator (including the extreme far right like Strom Thurmond), if Obama mentions it, the current GOP wouldn't have one vote in favor of it. Like the individual mandate for health insurance came from the right wing Heritage Foundation (now run by Jim Deminted), under Obama it became a communist plot. Like under Bush and Attorney General, John Ashcroft, who tried about 800 suspected terrorists who in criminal court, but under Obama they were being soft on terrorists and trying to let them get away. All Obama has to say is that he's for it, then the GOP is against it. Facts or not. Whether they used to be for it or not. Whether it was originally a GOP plan or not. That's what the meetings before he was inaugurated were about. Vote against everything and don't let him accomplish anything. Even if voting against it harms the people of this country or destroys this country. As long as Obama's for it and they can try to pin the blame on him. Sort of like the Reichstag Fire and blaming Obama. That way the GOP can take even more control like,...who was it behind that?

ymnbde 05/12/14 - 05:53 am
teachers don't like it, either

this is totally from the minds of bureaucrats and Democrats
and probably the math behind the validation of global warming
by Democrats and bureaucrats...
one can't help but think something more sinister is behind it all
school choice... common core is just more proof that public schools
and their attendant bureaucracies and unions are rotten
to their common core

ymnbde 05/12/14 - 06:01 am
oh bod, they were for it, then they were against it

democrats surely know 'bout that, don't they?
the concept of having a set of national standards is acceptable to most, the standards and the way the democrrats are implementing it all are not... they have once again politicized the education of kids, and focused on supporting bureaucracies and teachers unions
this shows just how incompetent public schools are
school choice is the only way...
but paste away, bod, paste away
all the live-long day, paste away
your daily democrat talking points memos

vegasbaby 05/12/14 - 06:55 am
commom core waste of valuable classroom time

With the quarterly testing that has be done to evaluate Common Core that can ruin the daily schedule out of 4-5 days a quarter added to the "boot camp" prep days for CRCT and the actual week of CRCT testing, that come right after Masters Week vacation. (plus one more day), there has been less instructional time = less education, learning. And with the timing of the CRCT, seems the teachers are just bidding their time till the end of the year, not starting with new materials. Shall I mention all the DVDs/movies my child tells me they watch in class. PS to teachers - I don't send my child to school to watch DVDs. (Middle School parent).

deestafford 05/12/14 - 08:30 am
Excellent letter. This was sold as a bill of goods..

Excellent letter. This was sold as a bill of goods as something that the governors sit down around a table and developed is as accurate as saying, "If you like your doctor you can keep him.'' Students under CC are unable to do math in their head nor understand multiplication tables as previous pre-60's generations.

What happened was the idea of national standards was pitched by some centralized government devotees and the carrot of federal money for those who bought in was dangled. Not one state legislature approved the CC. It was always approved by governors and state departments of education.

To think governors are smart enough to develop these idiotic processes as Chuck points out in his letter shows that some things are so absurd that only "intellectuals" will believe them.

Bill Gates like this because the system will be using software developed and sold by his company. The feds like it because it gives them control over what goes in the skulls full of mush who are held captive in the public education system.

The idea that this will help our students graduate and compete with others throughout the world because we have one standard is hog wash. There is no proof that the countries with common standards are the best in the world. Many of the better have no common standards. The more centralized government countries have a common core.

Another thing is the size and diversity of this country is such that our education system cannot be compared to that of smaller countries. The solution is for the federal government to get completely out of the education business and allow the states to do their own way. The smart states will copy what is successful in the other states and scrap what is not working.

Just because someone resides in a cubicle in DC does not make them smart nor know what is best for the children in Richmond, Columbia, or Aiken counties.

deestafford 05/12/14 - 10:05 am
We quit dancin' with the one that brung us....

We quit dancin' with the one that brung us is the reason the US has slipped over the years far down the ladder of world education rankings.

We got away from the techniques and methods which had been successful and had us at the upper level of education competency because we allowed all the "know it all" educational progressives who came of age in the 60's. It started with whole word learning in reading and I don't know what the math/arithmetic incursion was called.

Let's just phonics, multiplication tables, and rote memory and learning went down the drain followed rapidly by achievement levels.

Combine the above with the further capturing of education from the states by the feds and you have the substandard system we had today.

It's rotting of education has spilled over into the lowering of the meaning and the dumbing down of the worth of a college degree. Costs of college exploded as a result of the feds taking over the funding/loaning of money for colleges. It's just like when a third party pays for health care...costs explodes because it's someone else's money.

Call it socialism or whatever but the more anything gravitates toward the blackhole known as Washington, DC the less its standards and effectiveness tends to be. There's plenty of intelligence and commonsense in DC because once it gets there it never escapes to the rest of the country.

edcushman 05/12/14 - 11:27 am
"Call it socialism or

"Call it socialism or whatever but the more anything gravitates toward the blackhole known as Washington, DC the less its standards and effectiveness tends to be."
Dee, I agree. Obama and his gang of thugs are doing all they can to bring this country to its knees. They want to punish the evil white man for all the wrongs they have done.

Darby 05/12/14 - 12:10 pm
Bod - You saying it, believing it

doesn't make it so.

corgimom 05/12/14 - 10:24 pm
I was taught base 2 math,

I was taught base 2 math, along with all the other base math, back in 4th, 5th and 6th grade- and that was over 40 years ago.

What's the big deal about it?

I was an elementary school student in the 60's, and I know my multiplication tables just fine, I have no idea why Dee Stafford thinks they weren't taught in the 60's. And my son was taught multiplication in the late 80's, so Dee, I don't know where you get your information from, but it is just plain wrong.

And when my son was taught whole language, I didn't care, because I had already starting teaching him phonics, while he was a pre-schooler, so he knew that, too.

There has been a technological revolution, and society will never go back to the way it was, and they shouldn't. It is foolish and unefficient to teach today's students using 1950's methods, why would anybody do that?

And Dee, the math program you are thinking of was called New Math, and my parents didn't understand it, but it was great. It was much better than the boring math of old. That New Math is what enabled the growth of computer technology. I can still remember explaining Base 2 math to my mother, who was totally lost.

But Dee, your idea of why college costs exploded is way far off. What caused the explosion was the idea that every child should go to college. Colleges were flooded with students, they built bigger and bigger campuses, and the cost to the states was enormous, rising every year, and was unsustainable. So the shift began to take the burden off of the states and put it onto the students- which is a pretty good idea.

corgimom 05/12/14 - 10:26 pm
ymnbde, all anybody would

ymnbde, all anybody would have to do to fix the schools is get rid of "mainstreaming", NCLB, and those horrible tests that test nothing, and schools would go back to the way they were.

If schools could get the mentally ill, the emotionally disturbed, and the troublemakers out of the classrooms and into self-contained environments, you would see an explosion of achievement.

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