View Full Version : Doubts about school computer use

22nd Nov 2004, 14:02
Well no s**t Sherlock.Anyone with any common sense could have seen this coming,but no,luvvie duvvie left wing teachers and advisors obviously knew better than us.
When will these people realise that our children's education is NOT an ongoing experiment and leave the tried and trusted methods alone.
Report here:-

Dumber and Dumber (http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/education/4032737.stm)

22nd Nov 2004, 14:19
I remember a very similar study and argument about calculators when I was at school. :rolleyes:

22nd Nov 2004, 15:46
... which turned out to be correct, didn't it J ?

Or has there been a sudden upsurge in numeracy recently ?

22nd Nov 2004, 16:01
Not my fault I need a calculator to cound how many eggs are in a dozen. I'm a product of my environment.

22nd Nov 2004, 16:14
... and a spellchecker maybe ? :p

22nd Nov 2004, 16:18
We counded eggs in my part of the world, I tells ya! None of that sissy counting for me.

22nd Nov 2004, 16:21
That's quite ironic Jerricho considering your post on the I work with someone who looks like (http://www.pprune.org/forums/showthread.php?s=&threadid=153008&perpage=15&pagenumber=2) thread ten minutes afterwards!!

22nd Nov 2004, 16:50

Well, well............I meant to get it wrong! So there.
(School also taught me not to play well with others)

The punctuation and spelling police sure are out today!

Jerrichos MIL
23rd Nov 2004, 00:09
Jerricho, your confession that I'm a product of my environment.
just reinforces my opinion that we should have retained Australia as a penal colony and NEVER let anyone out of there.

Onan the Clumsy
23rd Nov 2004, 00:29
I was preparing a stude for the private pilot flight test and we were covering weight and balance when he had to divide some number like 7683 by 10.

Imagine my surprise when he whipped out his calculator.

Oh how we laughed at that one. :ugh:

Solid Rust Twotter
23rd Nov 2004, 19:05
Saw someone adding 11 and 3 using a calculator a day or two ago.

What would an appropriate response consist of...... fist, feet or teeth?

23rd Nov 2004, 19:16
Who can remember the days when a good barmaid could add up the cost of a complex round in her head. Nowadays the barperson has to walk to the till to press the symbol of the drink on the till screen,that they have just poured. They even have trouble remembering the round now never mind figuring the cost.
This is not necessarily because they are thick but that the computerised system doesn't consider it necessary for them to know the price of anything....

tony draper
23rd Nov 2004, 19:46
Blame decimal coinage and measure,sprogs in my day had to deal with 240 pennies to the pounds 20 shillings ,10 florins, eight half crowns, 40 tanners, 80 thrupenny bits,480 hapennies.
2240 llbs to the ton,16 ounces to the pound 14 pounds to the stone, 8 stones to a hundredweight.
5280 feet, 1760 yards to the mile, 12 inches to the foot, three feet to the yard,9 square feet to the square yard, 144 square inches to the square foot, and you wonder why we were more numerate?
Incidently Google is prolly doing to general knowledge what the calculator did to mental arithmetic.
Saying that one is a dedicated Google and pocket calculator user now.

23rd Nov 2004, 21:24
I remember a very similar study and argument about calculators when I was at school

And slide rules, and log tables. In fact it all went wrong when kids were told to stop taking off their shoes and socks for big numbers

Anyway, I think story is [email protected] Provided the basic rules are taught as well as or even before, allowing computers, slide rules, calculators, log tables, there is no problem.

23rd Nov 2004, 21:43
The difficulty arises when the computer/calculator whatever gets the wrong button pressed AND IT ISN'T REALISED!!!

The resultant number is believed..........

To this day, I do a rough 'sanity check' on the calculator output, just in case. Suppose a weight and balance calculation was wrong? Doing a mental sanity check might make an awful lot of difference.

A friend who, before retirement, flew Hercs for Her Majesty told me that in the first Gulf war, a Herc was loaded to the right number in kilograams rather than pounds. He said it took a long time to get off, flew heavily and strained the airframe on landing to the point of writing it off. Maybe somebody doing some mental sums might have avoided a near catastrophe.

And if education is so good, why does practically every university engineering department in the Uk have to run remedial maths courses for engineering students with A and B level passes in maths at A level?

Feeton Terrafirma
23rd Nov 2004, 21:55
And surprisingly the answer is in the report...... computers are a tool

Yes folks, computers are only a tool and we all know (or do we) that a tool is only as good as the person using it. Perhaps its time someone told our teachers that little titbit.

23rd Nov 2004, 21:58
With you there about the sanity check redang.

Of course I can remember my father moaning that I wasn't taught my tables at school (which I wasn't) - instead I was taught what multipication meant. So instead of the song
"One two is two"
"Two two's are 4"

etc., I could cope with nineteen seventeens which dad could not do without a pen and paper

And if education is so good, why does practically every university engineering department in the Uk have to run remedial maths courses for engineering students with A and B level passes in maths at A level?

yes, good point, so the basics are not being taught enough although how that can be blamed on using a computer/calculator/abacus/toes, I am not sure

24th Nov 2004, 08:31
Sanity/Gross error check :ok:

Many years ago, I was watching one of the Beebs Xmas Lectures for youngsters. This particlular lectures was talking about mathematic and asked the question ' Whats 47 x 63?

After a minute a few hands hesitantly went up, the lecturer said 'No - too slow - come on, whats 50 x 65?'

This time the response was a bit faster but when he rebuked them again and asked for the resultant of 50 x 60, the response was almost instant.

And that taught me to do a rough check first and then a detailed sum second - a principle I always apply.