Mischaracterizations, Dept.

traditional math

“Traditionalists” (as they like to style themselves) are incapable of grasping the fact that high school math exists, and that most high school math teachers aren’t constructivists.

The above quote was from a blog written by a math teacher, and was a post about an article that Katharine Beals and I wrote which was published in online Atlantic in 2015. It caused a stir among those who don’t like what “traditionalists”  have to say about teaching math.

In fact, we do know that most high school math teachers do not teach in the inquiry-based manner. What we also know is that in K-6, much of math has been dominated by the math reform ideology as embodied in many textbooks. Constance Kamii’s belief that teaching the standard algorithms to young children does them harm by eclipsing understanding has set the stage for how math has been and is being taught in…

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