kitchen table math, the sequel: what is area?

Sunday, September 28, 2008

what is area?

Ed just talked to a young man who, while he was going to college, tutored in a New York City middle school. One day he overheard a math teacher in the school ask another math teacher how to calculate the area of a triangle. The teacher needed to know because, "I have to teach area of a triangle today."

7 comments:

Obi-Wandreas, The Funky Viking said...

The problem is that idiots like that will not be fired if they cannot be replaced. They're kept around because they at least serve the purpose of having a warm body in the classroom.

concerned said...

This is very disturbing!

At least this teacher had the (courage?) to ask. Many times teachers don't - out of fear.

If we spent more time learning how to teach our subject matter in education classes, this would never happen! Is it more beneficial to learn techniques for inquiry and investigation? (hm...)

Dawn said...

"At least this teacher had the (courage?) to ask. Many times teachers don't - out of fear."

I don't know. The fact that he knew he had to teach it and didn't at least google it the night before in preparation makes me think he's more lazy then courageous.

Niels Henrik Abel said...

Sounds like one of the students in my math-for-elem.-ed.-teachers class.

Barry Garelick said...

In the ed school which I attend, we are required to take a class called "Literacy in the Content Area" which I think is about how to teach students who can't read well, or are ELL. I haven't taken the class yet, but someone I know who was taking it said the teacher gave a "informational quiz" in class (i.e., scores not counted, just a quiz to see how much people knew about certain terms). One of the question asked for a definition of "Rhombus". The person I know (who majored in math) gave the correct answer, to be told by the teacher that it was wrong--a rhombus is a quadrilater, yes, with that she agreed, but she said that the sides of a rhombus are not necessarily equal. Not sure what the teacher thought the correct definition is, and at this point I'm not sure I need to.

Catherine Johnson said...

The fact that he knew he had to teach it and didn't at least google it the night before in preparation makes me think he's more lazy then courageous.

I LOVE IT!

I THOUGHT WE WERE ALL SUPPOSED TO BE GOOGLE-LITERATE IN THE 21ST CENTURY!

Catherine Johnson said...

The person I know (who majored in math) gave the correct answer, to be told by the teacher that it was wrong--a rhombus is a quadrilater, yes, with that she agreed, but she said that the sides of a rhombus are not necessarily equal.

A friend of mine spent a week sparring with a math teacher over whether an equation does or does not include an equals sign.

My friend's position was that it does.