The New York Times reports that for the second time in a generation, officials are rethinking math instruction in U.S. schools. These changes are being considered because of lagging performance on international exams in addition to warnings from experts who argue that so-called “reform math” has compromised students because it de-emphasizes drills in favor of allowing children to develop their own solutions to problems. Reconsideration of curricula and methods regarding math instruction is being fast tracked by the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics. In 1989, the group recommended allowing children to explore their own solutions to math problems in order to spur their creativity. This fall however, the group has changed course, and recommends a tighter focus on basic math skills and an end to state standards that force instructors to teach several math topics in each grade… (Note: This site requires free registration.)