Required Readings

UC Davis publicity problems, debate over debate location, fixing math ed, science ed teaching and learning, school funding, and more: Required Readings, 04.18.16

Documents released last week show that the University of California-Davis spent at least $175,000 on consultants in an attempt to scrub the Internet of negative online postings regarding a 2011 incident during which students were pepper-sprayed, in order to boost the school’s public image. (I know several librarians at UC Davis who could have …

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Cross-postEducationPedagogyPrimary Education

A Meditation on Ratio

What do you think a ratio is? I emphasize “think” because I’d like you to be interested only in the fragmentary pictures conjured by the question—you want to be aware of what you think a ratio is, not what you think you know about ratios, which are two different thinks. …

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Woman in front of mirror with towel on her head.
Critical ThinkingEducationPedagogy

Teaching Topless

I’d like to share a really nice presentation below by Valerie Otero, professor of science education, and Edd Taylor, assistant professor of math education, both with the University of Colorado at Boulder. And then I’ll bother you with some thoughts about it.   The unifying theme here is the pyramid …

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A row of cups that look like faces.
Critical ThinkingEducationPedagogy

You Cannot Not Have Conceptual Understanding

In education, we seem to take some delight in shoveling a confused mix of folksy connotations into sciencey-shelled words and phrases. Some of my colleagues would call the result edujargon, though I think that word allows us to feel too smug about our own obtuseness—as though the problem is that …

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Critical ThinkingPrimary Education

About those viral Common Core problems

If you’re anything like me, you’ve probably seen one of those viral posts on social media presenting a (seemingly) ridiculous common core math problem, and possibly even a frustrated parent responding with some kind of exasperated takedown. Like this one. (Also pictured) It is super tempting, especially for those of …

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EducationHigher EducationPedagogyPop QuizScience

Pop Quiz: The Horror of Math

The bulk of the classes I teach are general science courses that are not math heavy. Even though these courses do not rely on math like a Physics class would there is still a small math component to each course. I am really not sure how to do science without …

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Detail from title page of J.S. Bach's Well-tempered Clavier
Critical ThinkingCultureHigher Education

Wikipedia 1, U Chicago News Office 0.

I was browsing my news feed today when I came across the following video, posted by the University of Chicago’s News Office.   Since I’m about to get very critical, let me first talk briefly about the things Cheng does well in this video: 1) She gives a mostly understandable …

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People Kissing
EducationRequired Readings

Under-Age Sexting; Mandatory iPads; Teaching Math; Commonwealth Kisses: It’s Required Readings!

Under-age British teenagers are warned about the legal implications of texting explicit images to each other.   A school is accused of fostering bullying and creating a two-tier system by asking parents to buy iPads for their children to use in classes.   The ways in which math is taught …

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A+ paper
Critical ThinkingRequired Readings

Superstar profs, critical thinking and math, college athletics, and Catholic schools: Required Readings, 6.3.14

Our semester ended last Thursday, and my cerebral processes fled the building along with most of the students. Hence, I present the Evening Edition of Required Readings. Philosophy isn’t my field, but this guy is apparently a Big Deal. Too bad he considers most of his students “boring idiots” and …

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Required Readings

Contrarian highlights & a tiny baby horse video- It’s Required Reading 5/23/2014

Ooh -Speecharella is all allergic, late & grumpy- so let’s do this: Gary Rubenstein wonders how much math do students really need? Diane Ravitch’s readers weigh in. Mercedes Schneider asks TFA members fairly obvious but somehow hard-hitting questions about what the hell they think they’re doing. Doni Wilson offers trigger warnings for Hamlet. …

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