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View Diary: There Is Going To Be A Huge, Huge Drop In Test Scores This Year (101 comments)

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  •  This is a big part of what's wrong. (6+ / 0-)
    You know something of what we do tend to use every day?  7 X 8 = 56.   It is amazing how so few children under 9th grade now can solve that on the spot, or even have a clue.... that is because they stopped teaching times tables in 2005,  Learning "principles of math" was more important....

    Remember cursive?  Not taught.  Did you not know that?  It's just like Arabic to children under 8th Grade... One has to read to their children all hand written letters directly from your mother.

    Whenever kids came over to my house after school I gave them a snack but I also made them write out a multiplication table before they could go run around with the rest. It got so it was a big "joke" but they did it anyway, and to this day I have a young friend who will smile and wave and yell "24" (the answer to "what is 3x8 or 6x4?"- her stickiest problem back then) instead of hello.

         As far as the cursive is concerned, there's a whole art to reading handwriting and scripts over the ages, I agree writing changes. But those who think switching to typing is always okay are missing this: From long practice, I can take notes just a few words behind what the speaker is saying, and because I have heard it in my mind long enough to process that back down the arm and form the letters physically on paper, the words  become "inscribed" in my memory more firmly. There is a reason for "writing." Sometimes no one else recorded it and your record could be the only one.
        In my day when we took notes for a paper we had to copy the words from our sources by hand. Having double-processed it by both reading it and writing it, again, it's easier to remember. In fact if you want to remember something, write it one hundred times on the blackboard, anyone remember that?...Doing all this with a word processor is simply not the same and imho definitely not as good. I am a journalist and creative writer, and I do use cut and paste half the time. But most of my notes are in long-hand on the backs of supermarket receipts. I recently watched someone struggle to give a talk while trying to find her notes in the book on her kindle she was talking about. Scroll, scroll, scroll...Agony. My desktop is real and my folders are manila, mostly.

    We are all pupils in the eyes of God.

    by nuclear winter solstice on Sat Sep 07, 2013 at 07:29:31 AM PDT

    •  Thank you for all of this, (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      nuclear winter solstice

      especially about writing by hand.

      One reason handwriting is so important to me is that I recently lost my Mom, who was elderly, and finding her letters among my own keepsakes was one of the most cherished moments of dealing with grief. Her handwriting is a part of her that I can keep, so tangible and personal. And among her keepsakes were boxes of what she labeled, "Correspondence," letters from my grandparents, aunts, uncles, friends, nieces, nephews, and her grandparents. Along with her paintings and ceramics, these letters are artworks made by the hands of each of these precious family members.

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