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Thread: Teaching Math: an Evolution

  1. #1

    Teaching Math: an Evolution


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  2. #2
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    Math in the 2010s

    Wall Street orders Congress to privatize our National Parks. German Bankers buy them and hire undocumented immigrants to cut down the forest. They sell it to China.

    Aren't you glad the system works!

  3. #3
    Seems like the way we were headed. DM

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    International Paper essentially supported the community I grew up in. I know this is an old story that is mirrored everywhere but...

    When logging came to a "screeching" halt (owls screech...) it wasn't just the taxes and commerce involvement that disappeared - it was the complete dissolution of the community. School funding was not self-reliant, roads not fixed on time, etc.

    Generations of logging families found themselves going from a good living wage to having no place in society.

    Math aside, men risked their lives forever to build what we have just for society to turn around and be shun them for what they do. Trees were spiked, gear sabotaged, anti-logger signage, etc. Chainsaws available for pennies on the dollar.

    No more floated logs, train cars sat idle, so many businesses folded, crime went up, and the mill in Gardner literally disappeared. If you drive through there all you see is acre upon acre of concrete with bits of steel sticking up here and there.

    Sold for scrap.



    The saws were silenced.

    Looks like the site was bought this last year.
    http://theworldlink.com/news/local/b...2905ead85.html

    While the purpose of the site is not disclosed, I don't feel that it is going to be used for timber,

    "In January, the (Tacoma) News-Tribune reported that Heidgerken is developing the former headquarters of Nalley Fine Foods in Tacoma into a marijuana business incubator, with spaces for growing, processing and storing marijuana on the 22-acre site."

    Maybe for harvest but not for timber...

  5. #5
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    Actually, Congress devalues pubic forests in 1990 and then jacks up profits for private timber companies by allowing them to ship all our raw logs to Asia. By law, forests supporting schools are forced to earn smaller profits than forests owned by the economic elite.

    The local port is filled with mountains of logs, but local mills starve for wood and go under. Export logs pay 25 to 50 percent more than domestic mills can pay because Asian buyers have no environmental rules and and labor standards to deal with. Schools lose money. Jobs disappear. Salmon disappear. Wildlife disappear. Streams turn to mud in heavy rains. Profits are much higher, but owners are now big TIMO investors back east. Profits go east. Jobs go to the Far East.

    Private companies shorten rotations to 40 years so that giant feller bunchers can harvest the trees rather than loggers. Logger wages fall to what is minimum wage in Seattle.

    There's your real math.

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    If you did some research and looked into how the average employee was compensated in benefits and wages in places like Italy it would make you sick.
    I will just stop right there.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Agent_H View Post

    When logging came to a "screeching" halt (owls screech...) ...
    This myth is often repeated and always needs to be de-bunked. The spotted owl didn't kill logging. Over harvest killed logging....

    We stopped cutting old growth in 1992 while 2% of our remaining old growth was standing. We had been harvesting 1% per year. If we kept cutting we'd have run out in 2 years with the same result for logging communities plus we wouldn't have our small genetic seed bank to provide the diversity to protect our forests from global pests.

    Read the book 'Deadfall', by James LeMond (from a NW logging family) if you want to know the truth.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Square_peg View Post
    This myth is often repeated and always needs to be de-bunked. The spotted owl didn't kill logging. Over harvest killed logging....

    We stopped cutting old growth in 1992 while 2% of our remaining old growth was standing. We had been harvesting 1% per year. If we kept cutting we'd have run out in 2 years with the same result for logging communities plus we wouldn't have our small genetic seed bank to provide the diversity to protect our forests from global pests.

    Read the book 'Deadfall', by James LeMond (from a NW logging family) if you want to know the truth.
    This is all true. Still hard on a lot of people.

  9. #9
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    Yes. A way of life ended.

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    In northern Idaho we have the Cataldo mission state park. It was erected 1850-1853. An interesting place and the type of stop I like to make to look over old buildings. The first thing that grabbed my attention is the lumber used in its construction. There is just nothing like that available today or growing anywhere that I have seen other than very rare pockets of protected old growth stands. If I didn't know better I would wonder where it was imported from.

    Idaho's big old growth forests are long gone. Most people today don't even know we had really large old growth forests.

  11. #11
    As a guy on the other side of the pond, I didn't know this would open a can of worms. I can see why, though.

  12. #12
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    Thank you! In many ways it's true. I was tasked with teaching junior high school math 20 years ago and discovered that students (of the time), by and large could no longer read analogue clocks nor understand fractions. I was supposing that neither Calculators nor Computer programs dealt with 'drivel' such as this and consequently erased the importance of their being useful or relevant.
    Eastern Ontario/western Quebec experienced a severe ice storm in January of 1998 and electricity was out for at least a week. Youthful cashiers working by candle and flashlight at grocery and other stores did not have any idea of how to 'make change' on purchases and this really opened some eyes about the direction and future of gov't sponsored education.

  13. #13
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    The problem is that education funding is way down. Our state legislature is being fined $100,000/day for failing to meet their constitutional obligation to fund public schools. Instead they give tax breaks to billionaires so they can ship our jobs to China.

    http://www.thenewstribune.com/news/p...106406507.html

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    The real question regarding the OP image is in what grade? As smug as the tone of it is, it is (of course) pretty off the mark for the reality of math education at nearly any level after the supposed 1970's description. In the early 2000's a more likely phrasing for me to have seen at the time would have been "A logger sells a truckload of lumber for $100. How much was his profit if it was 1/5 the sale price?" The formula of Profit = Sales - Cost of Goods Sold is simple, but an additional step I didn't see in word problems most of the time over the whole of my school years up until college because they tended to be "single concept" problems. In the given problem we have both the fraction and the conversion from sales and CoGS to profit whereas most word problems I saw in my school days would have either asked for a simple conversion of the fraction directly into the answer, or asked for the profit figuring, but not both in one problem. I would have preferred them compounded like that, though, as not only is it more realistic in how you'd actually be applying the skills, but it allows you to revisit concepts learned in previous parts of the curriculum so you don't just fall into the "learn for the test and forget" trap.


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  15. #15
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    Fractions are fast becoming a scholastic novelty much like learning and using Roman numerals, especially in Countries that have adopted the Metric System. Teaching today's youth how to read an Imperial tape measure is quite an undertaking. The concept of 16ths and denominators 32, 8, 4 and 2 is entirely foreign to them and the Smartphone calculators they immediately whip out just messes them up even more.

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    I think mine was the last generation to be taught cursive in school. Pretty sure that's been dropped everywhere as well.

    Ironically, while the metric system is better for conversions, Imperial units and fractions are much easier to use for rough measurement and estimation in the field when you're away from a standardized measuring tape and/or calculator.

    This is a good read.


    Baryonyx Knife Co. ~Trusted specialists in high value, low cost knives and tools.

    "To live at all is miracle enough."
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  17. #17
    Lol. Cursive starts in second grade with the childs name and fractions are in fourth or fifth grade around here. Source, I have children.

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    You can add this.

    Teaching Math in 2016:
    El hachero vende un camion de carga por $100. El costo de production es........
    “History is a pack of lies about events that never happened written by people who weren't there."

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    Quote Originally Posted by UffDa View Post
    You can add this.

    Teaching Math in 2016:
    El hachero vende un camion de carga por $100. El costo de production es........
    Tornillo eso!

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by UffDa View Post
    You can add this.

    Teaching Math in 2016:
    El hachero vende un camion de carga por $100. El costo de production es........
    The political forum is somewhere else??

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