[Maths-Education] The resource for the course

Tanner H.F. h.f.tanner@swansea.ac.uk
Wed, 19 Sep 2001 00:11:23 +0100

When the National Curriculum was introduced in England and Wales in 1988 I
was very sad to discover how many of my colleagues believed that they should
now abandon their ideas about how to teach.  The logic seemed to run along
the lines of:

I know that I have always said that good teaching involved...

... but now we have national testing and the only way to pass tests is to
use mechanical rote learning.  There is no time to let children think for

It made me wonder then why they had encouraged their earlier ideas if they
did not truly believe in the theories of learning which underpinned them.
Were they just following a covenient fashion?

The nature of good teaching does not change when the testing regime changes.
Good teaching involves relational understanding, a sufficient degree of
student autonomy (supported by teachers and peers)and problem solving in
"unseen" situations.  Everything else is so much useless junk.

Teachers march to higher orders than those found in National Curriculum
documents.  Don't be fooled by administrative pen pushers.  Keep the faith!

Howard Tanner