In 1987, then Dept of Interior Secretary Donald P. Hodel when questioned about the deterioration of the ozone layer in the atmosphere suggested that people wear hats, sunglasses and protective sun creams to protect against skin cancer. He was soundly criticized for a statement that addressed the symptoms but not the cause.
A similar attitude is seen in education–particularly math education–from vendors promoting the next shiny new thing designed to cure educational woes. I just finished reading two articles. The first is a PR puff piece written by “guest contributor” praising the program “Teach to One”. It discusses that students who lack foundational skills in math is a big problem–but “personalized learning” offers a solution to this ill.
“It’s difficult to teach a class that engages both lower-ability and higher-ability children because you can’t always address multiple needs simultaneously. Traditional teaching approaches will always leave some students behind.”
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