## Monday, August 23, 2010

### Math Education...

Via my brother Mark:
Last week I purchased a burger at Burger King for \$1.58. The counter girl took my \$ 2 and I was digging for my change when I pulled 8 cents from my pocket and gave it to her. She stood there, holding the nickel and 3 pennies, while looking at the screen on her register. I sensed her discomfort and tried to tell her to just give me two quarters , but she hailed the manager for help. While he tried to explain the transaction to her, she stood there and cried. Why do I tell you this? Because of the evolution in teaching math since the 1950s:

1. Teaching Math In 1950s

A logger sells a truckload of lumber for \$100. His cost of production is 4/5 of the price. What is his profit ?

2. Teaching Math In 1960s

A logger sells a truckload of lumber for \$100. His cost of production is 4/5 of the price, or \$80. What is his profit?

3. Teaching Math In 1970s

A logger sells a truckload of lumber for \$100. His cost of production is \$80. Did he make a profit?

4. Teaching Math In 1980s

A logger sells a truckload of lumber for \$100. His cost of production is \$80 and his profit is \$20. Your assignment: Underline the number 20.

5. Teaching Math In 1990s

A logger cuts down a beautiful forest because he is selfish and inconsiderate and cares nothing for the habitat of animals or the preservation of our woodlands. He does this so he can make a profit of \$20. What do you think of this way of making a living? Topic for class participation after answering the question: How did the birds and squirrels feel as the logger cut down their homes? (There are no wrong answers, and if you feel like crying, it's ok. )

6. Teaching Math In 2009

Un hachero vende una carretada de maderapara \$100. El costo de la producciones es \$80. Cuanto dinero ha hecho?

7. Teaching Math In 2010

Who cares, just steal the lumber from your rich neighbor's property. He won't have a gun to stop you, and the President says it's OK anyway cuz its redistributing the wealth.