To: Chancellor
Levy, Members of the Board of Education of the City of New York

Date:

By E-Mail

I am the mother of
a 3rd and 6th grader in the the NYC public schools and I urge you to write a
report exposing this ghastly plan to waste over $9 million on the TERC and NCTM
Standards-based math programs that have proven to be a disaster and universally
condemned by math professionals.

I have
been tutoring my own children for about 3 years because I noticed that they
were not getting math in school. Their
composition books labelled "Math" stay virtually empty for the whole
year. That is because they are too busy
playing games made out of little pieces of paper. They spend more time making the game pieces
than learning math. My children have
learned more math from playing monopoly and cards than from the inane games
they have had to play from 1st grade onwards.
There is little practice of addition, subtraction, multiplication or
division. The teachers spend very little
time, if any, on telling time and using money. Instead, the teachers teach
"concepts" like 36 = 3 tens + 6 ones for the entire year and then
spend the next year reviewing last years' "concepts" and learning
"new concepts" like 36 = 6 groups of 6's, but never learning multiplication
tables unless someone outside of school teaches them.

I feel that we are
like the book people from Ray Bradbury's Fahrenheit 451 (the temperature at
which paper burns) who fled into the forests with their precious books to keep
them from being destroyed by the government.
Here, in NYC, there are no math textbooks, only workbooks with hardly
any numbers in them at all! While my
children occasionally have a teacher brave enough to "supplement" the
NCTM and TERC methods they are ordered to teach with real math that will
actually help them in real life and on real standardized tests, other teachers
have actually expressed fear from diverting from the NCTM and TERC programs in
any way.

I sincerely hope you can help to expose the
NCTM, TERC and other so-called "new math" programs for the shams that
they are. The $9 million would be more
useful in supplying every public school child with an abacus combined with
instruction in how to use it.

Sincerely,

Diane Goldstein
Temkin