Friday, October 03, 2008


Politicians and policymakers have fallen in love with the idea of eighth-grade algebra for all. Their ardor is not likely to cool off soon. California is moving toward making the course mandatory for eighth-graders, a shift Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger (R) compared to President John F. Kennedy's pledge to put a man on the moon. Some see the flourishing eighth-grade algebra movement as a triumph for equity. Activist educator Robert Moses calls it "the new civil right." Full Article

I am one of the people who is not-so-sure about 8th grade algebra (having suffered through it at the hand of an incompetent teacher who will not be named).
With much help form my mom, a super summer class at the community college, and lots of tears, I was able to catch on before I started High School Algebra - but it was tough.

Years later, when I started to learn about child development, someone told me that often 8th graders are not developmentally ready to deal with Algebra (see Piaget and Formal Operational Stage).

I don't really have a point with all of this - except I wish I had better math teachers - and I wish I wasn't pushed into higher math just because I had learned "enough" arithmetic. That's all.