Some of my ideas about mathematics programs.

Most of the stuff on this page is quite old and I don't check the links to see if they are active. (Nov, 06)

Old math exams from Poly, put here 12/20/15.

Some Japanese math ed stuff. And one more.

(Added 6/16/08) Some testimony for Frederick County. In addition, there is a brief review of the new TERC Investigations materials.

By virtue (?) of being both a mathematician and a parent of a school age child, other parents from Friends school, around the state, and around the country, frequently come to me about mathematics educational issues. Thus, I was dragged, kicking, screaming and ignorant into the ``math wars''. Over time I started to feel like I had something to say. In a nutshell what I can contribute is pretty simple: A student prepared by today's ``reform'' mathematics programs such as those used at the Friends School of Baltimore is unlikely to succeed in mathematics courses in college without parental or tutorial intervention.

(Added 8/21/04) This is the web site of the Dream Team that studied the 6th grade standards together in Park Citym Utah July 22-24.

(Added 10/21/02) Today I was on a panel at the annual conference of the Association of Independent Maryland Schools. There were 130 math teachers from private schools in the audience. Here is a list of the questions for the panel and my personal responses. I should mention that my son's school has switched math programs from the TERC Investigations program to Everyday Math. What can you do? It is infinitely better than TERC so does it really matter if it is any good or not? Well, of course it does matter. Some reviews of Everyday Math are here and another one reviews. (Added 3/28/03) More commentary condemning Everyday Math.

6/03 Much of this discussion has become moot for me personally although I am still very interested. My son has opted out of his private school for a special math/science program in the public schools (he starts 6th grade this fall). The special program is the Ingenuity Project. The teachers are subject matter qualified and they use all the right texts.

On March 4, 2002, a debate about reform mathematics (K-12) was held in Washington. It was fascinating and a complete transcript, including panel presentations, audience Q & A,and panelists' hand-outs are now avaliable on the web. See here.

added 6/9/03 I have done a study of the effect of calculator usage in K-12 on college math grades. pdf version word perfect version

I am posting my letters to my son's school here.

The first is a simple poll taken about mathematicians' attitudes. This was done in Feb. 2002.

The second is a letter I wrote during the summer of 2001 to the Lower School. I feel they have been very responsive but I put the letter here for the record. This is mostly about the TERC Investigations program.

The third is an open letter to the Friends community written in March, 2002, as I became aware of the Middle School mathematics program. It is a passionate plea for content.

Friends School uses the TERC Investigations math program in K-5. It is viewed by many as about the worst of the worst, and today that is a highly competitive field. Here are some reviews of the program:

Bill Quirk's review.

Stanley Ocken's review.

Mathematically Correct's review (second grade). To save you time, their Overall Program Evaluation (for the second grade) is: "There is nothing to recommend about this program. The use of this program in our public schools is a strong argument for vouchers."

Mathematically Correct's review (fifth grade). To save you time, their Overall Program Evaluation: "This program received the lowest overall rating of the [10] fifth-grade programs in this review. This program cannot be recommended for use in fifth-grade classrooms."