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You can't hide from the facts of math

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  |  Posted: Wednesday, May 14, 2014 06:00 am

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I am appalled at Jeff Johnson and his vision for Alberta students in our schools. As a long-time teacher in St. Albert, I witnessed children memorizing their multiplication facts for the first time, and seeing instant gratification in their eyes. In a blink of an eye, their self esteem skyrocketed and their newfound knowledge, "I can do math," surfaced with pride.

Inquiry and discovery methods do not work with the majority of children and adults. Look at our Grade 12 scores. This is after a generation of no basics.

Wake up Mr. Johnson. This bullying teachers into your methods is crazy. Have you ever tried this approach, not for one canned lesson, but 10 months in a school year? Children and adults must have math facts at their fingertips to be successful in society. Ever see businessmen, bankers or government officials armed with a storage box full of blocks at a meeting trying to figure out a budget?

Then again, maybe that's why our tax dollars are disappearing into thin air or traveling accounts. I can't believe that in this democracy we live in, you are not listening to the educators, the Albertans, the parents nor the voters. No more home-grown engineers for this province.

The Alberta advantage will soon be the Alberta disadvantage. Let our educators teach math facts, or our children will be foreign workers to some other country.

Fran ODonnell, St. Albert


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