Published at Tuesday, 01 September 2020. Addition Worksheets. By Abella Perrier.
These children often rebel against a system that has failed to accommodate their needs and a small but significant minority can exert a disproportionately disruptive influence within schools before eventually disengaging with the formal learning process altogether. This, asserts Professor Barbara, has serious implications for us all. Craig Rama of the University of Alabama appears to provide compelling evidence in support of this theory. "Seventy-five percent of all imprisoned males in America have poor school records and low IQs," Rama pointed out. "Tracing their backgrounds turns up a familiar pattern: They begin as children from disadvantaged families starting school academically behind. They do not know how to read or do basic math because they are in poor systems they get little help. Growing frustration often turns into truancy, school failure, aggression and violence."
Failure to engage these men at a young age has proved disastrous for them and the communities they live in. But this is not an issue confined to the USA. In the For-bury district of Dunedin in New Zealand, Barbara has been overseeing a radical experiment. The local school was on the verge of anarchy. In desperation the local education authority turned to Professor for help. Her immediate response was to request a complete change of staff. New staff would be trained in delivering the curriculum in a variety of teaching styles suited to the individual needs of the learner. I was privileged to spend a fortnight at the school observing Head-teacher Janis Tonia and her staff successfully meeting the considerable challenges posed by a badly failing school in an area where gang culture is a fact of life. If these methods can work in that situation they can work anywhere.
According to the research, solid early mathematics skills are the strongest predictor of future academic success; greater than early reading skills, attention skills, and socioeconomic factors! So what early math skills are most important? The research focuses on "school-entry math skills" such as understanding small numbers (up to 30), quantities, and simple shapes. In addition, being able to count, compare, sort, and describe objects (up to 30) are considered core kindergarten math skills. A host of online tools are available to help young children improve their math and reading skills and technology has made great strides in the past several years in areas related to children has educational software. However, many of the technical advances may be overwhelming for young learners. Websites with 3D graphics and online virtual worlds ("edutainment") may be a useful tool for older children looking to build skills while having fun on the computer. However, younger children can be easily distracted by the overuse of technology in many of these programs.
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