h:\doc\web\97\07\mathprob.txt Here's an excellent example of an infintely hard problem that just wastes time, needs skills that aren't taught at the 6th grade level, and doesn't teach anything. They're spending so much !@#$% time and energy solving problems they're not actually learning anything. In the real world, you don't run mental obstacle courses, you do what you need to do, and you don't have to write a short novel on how you got there. It looks like the poor kid wasn't given a clue on how to solve this problem, just like the WA test, where 80% of the problems evidently expect you to figure out concepts and content they have never been exposed to. That's not education, that's just testing for IQ, only the kids with parents that take them to the science center and make them study high school level math topics will do well on that test. It's ironic that it's now the liberals who claim to stand for high standards, but it's just an excuse to switch over to a dumbed down math curriculum and downplay rote learning, memorization, and learning facts. When every liberal from FAIR to the education establishment and all the same people who brought you affirmative action are 200% for this new test, and no one questions whether a test that flunks 80% of the population, and contains high school to college - level content is too hard, what the heck is going on here? Help! > Subject: Sixth grade math problem > Arthur, > Below is a short set of clips of a discussion you may find interesting. > It seems to reflect some of your thoughts and concerns. > > Dr Bill Pfeifer > ---------------------------------------------------- > >>>If anyone can help with this I would appreciate it. > >>> > >>> If a person has change in his pocket equal to $1 with no less than 1 > coin > >>>and no more than 100 coins, how many different combinations of coins > can > >>>there be using 1, 5, 10, 25, 50, & 100 cent coins? > >>> > >>>I'm hoping that someone might have a more scientific way of figuring > this > >>>out. My friends 11 year old has this problem for school and is due on > > >>>monday the 29th. I told him I would see if I could get someone to > help. If > >>>your not sure but might know someone who could figure this out please > > >>>forward this message to them. > >>> > >>>Thanks > >>>Rick > >>> > > > -------------------------------------------------------- > >>>Subject: Fwd: Sixth grade math problem > >>> > >>>This is an example of what sixth graders are being assigned, instead > of > >math > >>>foundations. I assume this is "higher level thinking skills" - note > that > >the > >>>parent is actively involved in attempting to come up with the "right" > > >answer. > >>> > >>>I can't remember if it was first or second grade, but my daughter had > > >nightly > >>>"math challenge" questions which actually counted toward her grade. > Since > >>>I've always enjoyed math/logic puzzles, I had seen most of them > before; as > >a > >>>result, I'm sure my daughter had a higher "grade" than other students > on > >>>these. Is that the *true* reason that students with involved parents > do > >>>better in school, because those parents *teach* their children each > night > >>>(or, as below, know enough to ask "the world" for help)? > >>> > >>>Lauren > ------------------------------------ > >Subject: Re: Fwd: Sixth grade math problem > > > >Rick, > > > >You're right, that this is "higher level" thinking. IMO, this is not a > 6th > >grade problem. This is a statistics problem involving combinations and > >permutations. I haven't done statistics in a long time, so I'll have to > > think > >about it. But because you can use any grouping of coins in any > denomination, > >the possibilities are large. > > > >I doubt most high school students could solve this using equations > unless > >they had had HS level statistics. It is a "constructivist" exercise, to > be > >sure at 6th grade level. > > > >