posted on Aug, 5 2007 @ 07:23 PM
When I did my high school (early 70’s), I never used a calculator. The only thing, I had, was a Pickett Slide Rule, a Logarithm table, plenty of
quad pad & HB pencils. I learned, all the Math, Physics & Chemistry that you are supposed to learn at that age.
Later on, in junior college, and later on, in my University Years (Mechanical Engineering Degree), I then had several calculators, my more powerful
one, probably my programmable Texas Instruments TI-59. And except for the University Mainframe (operated by punch card), I didn’t have access to a
I’m not nostalgic, of thoses years, but I have a hard time, understanding, why, despite of fancy graphic calculators, computer, Math softwares,
students still have such a hard time, learning the same stuff, that was taugh, year ago.
My question, is basically this:
What has gone wrong, over the last 30 or 40 years, that we think, that we need, all that “wizard” equipment (fancy calculator, dazzling computer
graphic, Math software, etc.) in order to show (or teach or to make understand) Math, Physics & Chemistry concept, that has not changed much in year
(most of everything you learn, in junior college or early years of University, is roughly 150 to 200 years old, to start from, generation upon
generation of text book, has probably master every thing, there is to master, in term of best way of showing it, coming up with example, etc.)?
Is it because, the new generation of students, are dumber?, lazyier? Left on their own resources, without parents around, so you need all the bell and
whistle of modern gizmo’s to entertain them to death? (since they have an attention span of 3 or 4 seconds).
So you have that new Texas Instruments (TI-Nspire), it is suppose to address teacher concerns, fine, will it change anything in school teaching?, In
five years, from now, will we refer to before and after the TI-Nspire era?