I agree that we are falling behind in education as a nation. Spreading programs like these on a national scale will help boost our proficiency. When I was volunteering in the program, I realized that the students are serious about their education. All the students are there not because their parents told them to, but because they want to make a change and catch up on their education.

]]>I attended Mr. Crowder’s school, Paideia Academy, for my junior and senior years of high school. His independent study like approach allowed me to learn and progress at my own pace as well as develop academic discipline. He challenged me to correct all math problems marked wrong, making sure that I understood the concepts. Mr. Crowder was also willing to go over anything I still could not master.

I know he uses this same teaching style for his Math Intensive program because of the success exhibited by the students. Mr. Crowder’s program should be implemented into more schools!

]]>My personal experience is that Math was looking more and more foolish for my son (who at the time was in 5th grade). I pulled him and in his 6th grade year, we used the same curriculum as the Math Intensive program. I have seen my son learn and retain what he has learned throughout the year.

Common Core has been in our schools now for a few years, but last year was when the school district finally bought all the books that are common core aligned. (But not all the schools have received the necessary supplies) As the years go by, teaching the Common Core, the students will need Math Intensive starting earlier and earlier. It would be better to teach them correct principles from the beginning.

Now some would argue that if we are teaching math, it really doesn’t matter which way it is taught, it is all the same. This is just not true. James Milgram, a Stanford Mathamatics professor, that was on the validation committee for the Common Core standards, would not sign off on them because he feels that the teaching starting in 1st grade will ruin a child’s interest and ability in math for the rest of his life. If you don’t teach the basics, for example, math facts, during the early concrete phase of childhood, it will be more difficult to teach them when they are older.

A good program encompasses parent, student buy – in, good curriculum and good teachers. Currently our district is doing our students a disservice because they have spent millions of dollars on Common Core aligned math books that are of poor quality.

The Math Intensive program is exactly what our students need to be successful. Thank you Walter for bringing this to the attention of all parents.

]]>Yes, student and parental buy-in makes ALL the difference in the world and so does a no-nonsense atmosphere where teaching and learning can flourish. The fact that this is INTENSIVE adds even more to the equation.

As for Common Core, that’s a whole other story. As so many feared, it has morphed into more than just standards. Interest groups(publishers, and consultants come to mind) have long tentacles. With math there is this vogue methodology of student led facilitation.

Anything in moderation and done with common sense is worth considering but, as is usually the case, extremism wins the day.. this idea work might work better if kids weren’t so far behind the eight ball. At best, the new methodology of small groups can be very time consuming, at worst it can be the blind leading the blind.

]]>Clearly, it is only for serious students who want to get a grasp on Algebra and math so hopefully they can go on to plain and solid geometry.

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