Premium Essay

A Mathematician’s Lament

In: Novels

Submitted By marquezb89
Words 1968
Pages 8
A Mathematician’s Lament, by Paul Lockhart, is a mind revolving eye-opening piece on Lockhart’s extreme, yet makes logic, views on the mathematics education and curriculum in our educational system. An essay full of remarkable and strangely empowering critique about our mathematic education succeeds at motivating any future teachers to strive to make our math education curriculum better. This article critiques how we view mathematics as a culture, how teachers are “teaching” it (or not teaching it), why students are struggling and rejecting it, how parents in this society perceive it, and how testing students does not provide sufficient evidence that learning has taken place. This piece by Lockhart reinspires anyone (me in particular) and makes us realize that in fact math is an art like no other, and to have effective teachers, we need a greater understanding of the subject beyond the formulaic presentations we encounter from elementary to post high school education. Math is not about rules, it's not about arithmetic, it's not about notation. Math is about the search for beauty. The piece begins by a musician waking up from a terrible nightmare, where music education has been made mandatory both for music people and non-music people. "We are helping our students become more competitive in an increasingly sound-filled world. Educators, school systems, and the state are put in charge of this vital project. Studies are commissioned, committees are formed, and decisions are made-- all without the advice or participation of a single working musician or composer.” Then, a second nightmare occurs, but this time to a painter. It is same scenario with similar circumstances of extremities. Both nightmares serve to fulfill a comparison with today’s mathematics’ curriculums. Lockhart believes our mathematics education to be exactly like those nightmares; a world with a…...

Similar Documents

Premium Essay

A Mathematician’s Lament

...A Mathematician’s Lament, by Paul Lockhart, is a mind revolving eye-opening piece on Lockhart’s extreme, yet makes logic, views on the mathematics education and curriculum in our educational system. An essay full of remarkable and strangely empowering critique about our mathematic education succeeds at motivating any future teachers to strive to make our math education curriculum better. This article critiques how we view mathematics as a culture, how teachers are “teaching” it (or not teaching it), why students are struggling and rejecting it, how parents in this society perceive it, and how testing students does not provide sufficient evidence that learning has taken place. This piece by Lockhart reinspires anyone (me in particular) and makes us realize that in fact math is an art like no other, and to have effective teachers, we need a greater understanding of the subject beyond the formulaic presentations we encounter from elementary to post high school education. Math is not about rules, it's not about arithmetic, it's not about notation. Math is about the search for beauty. The piece begins by a musician waking up from a terrible nightmare, where music education has been made mandatory both for music people and non-music people. "We are helping our students become more competitive in an increasingly sound-filled world. Educators, school systems, and the state are put in charge of this vital project. Studies are commissioned, committees are formed, and decisions are......

Words: 1969 - Pages: 8

Premium Essay

Quiet: Power of Introverts

...have schools for ‘self-expression’ 100/929 and ‘self-development,’ although we seem usually to mean the expression and development of the personality of a successful real estate agent.” Another critic bemoaned the slavish attention Americans were starting to pay to entertainers: “It is remarkable how much attention the stage and things pertaining to it are receiving nowadays from the magazines,” he grumbled. Only twenty years earlier—during the Culture of Character, that is—such topics would have been considered indecorous; now they had become “such a large part of the life of society that it has become a topic of conversation among all classes.” Even T. S. Eliot’s famous 1915 poem The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock—in which he laments the need to “prepare a face to meet the faces that you meet”—seems a cri de coeur about the 101/929 new demands of self-presentation. While poets of the previous century had wandered lonely as a cloud through the countryside (Wordsworth, in 1802) or repaired in solitude to Walden Pond (Thoreau, in 1845), Eliot’s Prufrock mostly worries about being looked at by “eyes that fix you in a formulated phrase” and pin you, wriggling, to a wall. Fast-forward nearly a hundred years, and Prufrock’s protest is enshrined in high school syllabi, where it’s dutifully memorized, then quickly forgotten, by teens increasingly skilled at shaping their own online and offline personae. These students inhabit a world in which status, income, and......

Words: 118436 - Pages: 474

Premium Essay

Descartes Thoughts

...I assume their body to be but a statue, an earthen machine formed intentionally by God to be as much as possible like us. Thus not only does He give it externally the shapes and colors of all the parts of our bodies; He also places inside it all the pieces required to make it walk, eat, breathe, and imitate whichever of our own functions can be imagined to proceed from mere matter and to depend entirely on the arrangement of our organs. (Descartes 1972: 2–4; AT 11:120) Among the physiological functions that Descartes explained in the Treatise on Man, vision is paradigmatic of his account of sensation and perception. This sense depends, in this machine [as in us] on two nerves which must doubtless be composed of many fi laments. These fi laments must be as delicate and as easily movable as possible, inasmuch as they are destined to report to the brain the divers actions of the particles of the second element – which actions, in accordance with what has been said earlier, will enable the soul, when united with this machine, to conceive the diverse ideas of colors and light. (Descartes 1972: 49; AT 11:151) Descartes followed this statement about vision with a detailed description of the structure of the eye, showing how its anatomy produces the resulting perceptions. His account of vision supported the initial claim of The World, namely that what we perceive is unlike the objects that cause our perceptions. This claim distinguishes his view from that of the......

Words: 304088 - Pages: 1217