To learn math, drill and instill math skills, writes Barbara Oakley in the New York Times opinion column. If it’s hard, so much the better. An engineering professor at Oakland University in Rochester, Mich., she is the author of Learning How to Learn. Math is the language of science, engineering and technology. And like any language, it is best acquired through lengthy, in-depth practice.
. . . When we learn to play an instrument — say, the guitar — it’s obvious that simply u
“Now, what I want is Facts,” said Thomas Gradgrind in Dickens’ Hard Times. “Teach these boys and girls nothing but Facts. Facts alone are wanted in life. Plant nothing else, and root out everything else. You can only form the mind of reasoning animals upon Facts: nothing else will ever be of any service to them.” Before the Common Core, did teachers ask students to memorize facts without understanding? That’s a myth, argues Sandra Stotsky, who helped develop Massachusetts’ pr