Great article! When I was in the third grade, I was almost held back because I couldn’t (or wouldn’t) memorize the times table. This was during the bad old days of the timed math test, and the story problem — I was pronouced unteachable. Eventually I came up with shortcuts, but in high school I still flunked algebra, and defined myself as “bad at math”, in spite of loving science (even though my math disorder kept me out of science-I had to stubbornly insist that I be allowed to take chemistry). In college, though, I taught myself algebra, got an A in Statistics and a B in Elementary Functions. A few years later, when I took the GREs, I was stunned to find that that I had scored in the 94th percentile in math. Much, much later I read an article about a condition in young boys that prevents them from fluency in math — which oddly goes away by the age of 18 or so. As an adult, I became an educational technologist and computer programmer, and once made a series of videos with some of the math faculty in my college. I told them this story. One teacher said: “Your teachers were mistaking arithmetic for mathematics!”

Common Core Math is Not the Enemy

Brett Berry

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