Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Innumeracy in Action

Why American consumers can't add - The Red Tape Chronicles - "Here are a few examples of innumeracy in action:

According to the Department of Education’s National Assessment of Adult Literacy, U.S. adults are terrible at solving real-world math problems, like calculating tips or comparing prices in grocery stores. Some dismal results:

*Only 42 percent were able to pick out two items on a menu, add them, and calculate a tip.

*Only 1 in 5 could reliably calculate mortgage interest.

*1 in 5 could not calculate weekly salary when told an hourly pay rate."

And so on. It's all very sad.

1 comment:

acaciadad said...

Of course they can't do simple calculations. Teachers can't challenge them because it would be wrong to endanger their self-esteem. We also don't want to suggest by comparitive grades that some students are better at math than others; that suggests inequality. My Dad, who didn't finish college because of the Depression, yet went from Seaman to Captain (Naval Aviator) in WWII, constantly challenged his nine children to excel. I didn't care for math, so he taught me how to look at math problems as logic puzzles. After that, I did very well. Also, if you can learn decimals, you can handle most simple problems you'll face in daily life. Sadly, most of today's math teachers don't seem to be able to communicate the concepts well.