Sunday, December 26, 2010

Favorite comments of '10: daryl-michelle on the constructivist selection bias

In the wealthier districts like mine parents get tutors for their kids, or become de facto tutors. This is never taken into account when these districts brag about their quality and test scores. This is our 2nd year of constructivist math, 3rd grade, and its been a nightmare for certain kids (and their parents), with hours-long homework sessions resulting in still-failing grades (or non-grades, we use "indictors" here, I suspect, to cover up for this math...). The school is very willing to refer parents to tutors who charge $40/hr while pretending each kid is the "only one" struggling, but even before this every teacher who wanted to tutor gets booked all summer. I cannot tell how constructivist our math classes are in practice, but the materials for the program definitely expects it to be taught that way. And it is everywhere -"socratic circles" are in middle school social studies and english classes, in lieu of teaching, and my shy daughter can never come up with anything to say. But then our high school mathematics program mentions using Bloom's Taxonomy, which I do not fully comprehend but its supposed to encompass cognitive, affective and psychomotor areas of learning. Huh? How about just teaching math and we'll worry about the rest. Home schooling is looking better and better...

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