kitchen table math, the sequel: then and now

Friday, December 23, 2011

then and now

4/2006 -  the first day .... and Catherine's story (all pages are frozen; I can't edit them)

11/30/2006 - Christopher masters technology

12/23/2011 - thick envelope


TerriW said...

What nostalgia, hearing about the differences between Phase 3 and Phase 4 again. It's been awhile.

(It makes me wonder how I stumbled across KTM in the first place ... but it was so long ago -- back when my oldest was a toddler [!!], I think, that the memory is long, looong gone, and it ain't ever coming back.)

TerriW said...

Oh, I bet I know. That was around the time when we first looked into homeschooling, and I knew it was going to take me a few years of immersing myself in the resources available to get comfortable with knowing the lay of the land to make a good decision. I had heard whispers in the wind about Saxon and Singapore and Googled everything I could about them.

And look at that, right on the first page there, you've got links to both.

I suspect I stumbled across it in one of those searches, took a look around, got comfortable, and thought, "These are my people!"

(Though, actually -- it took a while to get comfortable. I never did get the hang of the wiki format.)

TerriW said...

I guess sometimes they *do* come back!

Anonymous said...

But Terri,

Look how we've kept our wiki names in honor of the old days.


Catherine Johnson said...

These are my people!

I think that's how everyone found the old wiki ---- desperately seeking Singapore-or-Saxon Math !

Catherine Johnson said...

oh my gosh!

I remember when Terri had her baby!

Remember - it's on the original site.

I'm going to go find that. ('Cuz it's much more fun than finishing up my grades.)

Catherine Johnson said...

oh my god, yes, phase 3 and phase 4

tweedle dee and tweedle dum

Catherine Johnson said...

sounds like they've basically gutted phase 4....which is a good thing for some kids & isn't for others, as far as I can tell

they never wanted the phase 4 course; my district doesn't want any kind of accelerated courses for any kids - until they get to high school, of course, when the elect are carefully studied for Honors placement

what a debacle that whole thing was

then we had more more math debacle in the Jesuit high school!

Catherine Johnson said...

If I had it to do over again, knowing what I know now -- knowing EVERYTHING I know now -- I would have kept Chris in Phase 3 AND hired a math tutor to accelerate him outside the classroom.

I would have just told Ed: we're going into debt for this.

A kid who's not mathematically gifted just cannot learn math without a coherent, sequential curriculum TAUGHT TO MASTERY.

End of story.

I don't think it's a good idea for gifted kids to have the spotty curriculum and teaching Chris has had since --- oh since 4th grade, approximately --- but mathemtically gifted kids would survive to AP calculus, which Chris didn't.

Actually....maybe not. Did I tell you Chris & his pals accidentally saw the AP calculus report on his precalculus teacher's desk last fall? This is AB calculus.

There were zillions os ONES.


These are the top math kids in a somewhat selective boys school.

Jen said...

A kid who's not mathematically gifted just cannot learn math without a coherent, sequential curriculum TAUGHT TO MASTERY.

Can't repeat that enough. My own kids did fine having EM through 6/7th grade. They ended up having great conceptual math skills and if they'd been my only experience, I'd be so happy with fuzzy.

But after I started volunteering and helping with a parent-run "extra math" program (magnet school, very wide range in each classroom), I realized the limitations for some kids very quickly. (And I remembered that I had been the one who forced my own kids to learn their math facts and learn to multiply and divide in ways that didn't require drawing skills or a piece of paper for each problem.) The worse side effect that I saw was that the "multiple ways of doing things" transformed in the kids' minds into "you can do any problem any way you want." Thus, if you don't really know how to divide, just try subtracting!

Later, I was lucky enough to work one year for a principal who understood that comment too (she had started out as a special ed teacher and she learned her lessons well there, lessons that work for all children pretty effectively). Then I worked for someone else and realized how bad it could be.

Your phrase should be engraved into most school classrooms.

FedUpMom said...

In the phrase "AB Calculus", what does "AB" mean? I've been wondering this for a while.

Anonymous said...


I'm not sure what it means exactly, but basically it covers around 4 chapters less than BC. They're both AP courses, but BC is supposed to move faster to cover the extra material.

Or so says my son.


ChemProf said...

AB calculus is equivalent to the first semester of college calculus, while BC is equivalent to the first year (so both differential and integral calculus).

Anonymous said...

AB covers integral and differential calc, I think, but not necessarily all of each (e.g., integration by parts seems to be covered in BC).

BC covers AB and series and some other stuff.

Mark Roulo