“Number sense,” courtesy of Common Core? We don’t know the source of that math problem, but based on what we’ve seen elsewhere, it has all the hallmarks of Common Core math.

Now try your hand at this third-grade math problem, also reportedly from a Common Core lesson:

Common Core: It’s For the Children™.


Michelle Malkin: My child’s Common Core-aligned Algebra book is crap

Pics of the day! Common Core ‘in a nutshell’ or just nuts?

New York City students flunk new Common Core-aligned tests; Bloomberg cheers

  • https://twitter.com/Captain_Cy_kun Cy

    So how is the 6 in 26 different than any other 6? I feel really bad for kids right now…

    • Jake Wilde

      I’m going back to college just to finish and it is bad how ignorant most of the kids are of anything. Their work is so substandard compared to what I had to do in the 80’s. I have a 4.0 without much effort and it isn’t because I’m genius.

      • Kimihiro Watanuki

        I know. I went back, too, and was the only student that knew how to diagram a sentence.

        • Magdalene51

          I still diagram sentences in my head, automatically. Things had to have a place, you know.

          • http://www.artinphoenix.com/gallery/grimm snowleopard (the true one)

            Diagram for sentences is not a strong point of mine, yet I can figure out the value of goods fast enough at the store, while shopping, and come close to the final total (counting taxes) by less than one-half dollar on a total order of $200.00

          • pajamakat

            Oh my. I thought I was the only one that did that. Glad I’m not alone; perfectly lined using a ruler.

          • AJ

            It should be, YOU KNOW?

        • annieoakley

          Diagram a sentence??? They don’t even know what a complete sentence is until High School maybe. I am surprised if an English teacher can diagram a sentence these days.

          • http://steamcommunity.com/id/pwag42 Swagner

            I’ve never even heard of diagramming a sentence, though I’m not surprised. The only stuff I really learned much of was math, and that was through concurrent enrollment. (graduated high school 3 years ago).

          • annieoakley

            I understand and it isn’t hard. I saved many of my old books so I am certain the books exist. I think abe books might have them. McMillian textbooks from the 1960s up through the mid 1980s.My sons were in high school in the late 1990s and several teachers (my age) had saved these old books and were still using them to teach (and to check themselves).

          • poopjuice

            DON’T get rid of the history books or anything with historical facts in them! The older the better. Because the history in the common core books isn’t any history I’ve ever heard of. For example, a high school history book groups the second and third amendments together to say “The Second and Third Amendments — grant citizens the right to bear arms as members of a militia of citizen-soldiers and prevent the government from housing troops in private homes in peacetime,”

            Notice they left out the word “keep” for starters……

          • Z_He_Lives

            You should learn it, it’s basic English construction theory. They phased it out when I was in middle school, so I was taught,mastered it, then they went to much less intelligent methods and they spent about 6 years trying to teach me that the stuff that they forced me to learn earlier was wrong and I was crazy for saying it wasn’t.

            Now they call me a “racist”, “imperialist”,blah,blah,blah for repeating exactly what they told me was true for the first 6 years of my life.

            You all didn’t even notice the transition, I bet.By my adolescent years, it was considered weird to know anything about history or to care about good,old-fashioned,non-settled,scientific method-type science. And if you speak English properly, people thought and probably still think that you are gay.These fools don’t deserve to inherit the legacy or the wealth of the men that came before us, they don’t know anything about it and they hate it even though they are ignorant of it.

          • http://www.chaosandcritters.com Ella Halligan

            We were diagramming sentences in junior high and had to continue all through high school… and I’m not that old! I’ve been looking for good resources to teach my kids how to diagram sentences and it hasn’t been easy… they don’t seem to exist anymore!

          • annieoakley

            I think there are some old textbooks at amazon. Also, abebooks.com I will look around and try to post tomorrow.

        • AJ

          It is WHO knew how to diagram a sentence.

          • Kimihiro Watanuki

            Why don’t you go buy a copy of Strunk and White. The things you’re picking on are so minor I think you’re just trying to irritate people. No reason for for venting your spleen. Do you have anything really substantive to say about my comments or are you just trying to be an irritant?

      • Brent Guthrie

        Went to college after a 16 year hiatus also. I took some basic math and algebra courses just to refamiliarize myself; I was going for an engineering degree. There were people one year out of high school having major difficulties with this basic material. I finished up TWO of these self-paced courses in LESS THAN one semester with a 99% in BOTH. Some of these kids actually failed these courses, and had to repeat.

        • http://www.artinphoenix.com/gallery/grimm snowleopard (the true one)

          One matter I did deal with is having a new boss just out of college at my workplace a few years back. He assumed he ‘knew all there was to know,’ turned out he discovered how little he knew.

          • annieoakley

            The mother of my boss was two years younger than I and my boss was just out of college. Terrible person to work for a real “know it all”.

        • TexasMom2012

          Yes, my sister teaches at a local junior college. Many of the students cannot pass on the first attempt a class in pre pre pre Algebra. Even with all the extra help she can and does provide.

          • chewinmule

            Don’t forget to add that most don’t read past ninth grade level!

          • OLLPOH ~ OurLifeLiberty

            At least once a week we send someone to http://www.dictionary.com to enlighten them that they will never know All. They have this attitude that they don’t need to know the definition of the word ‘feral’; and that all they have to do to get something tangible is copy and paste the sycophants talking points is going to get them somewhere in life in there future.

          • annieoakley

            And what is their comprehension level. One can read the big words but one also needs to understand what they mean. LOL

        • Blake Waymire

          I took a math placement test and it put me at the lowest rung (College Algebra). The thing is… I already know everything so far in the class. The other day, the teacher was on percentages (which I mastered in fifth grade). There were students in the room who needed her to go more in-depth with her explanations. Of percentages.

          How sad is this? I’m 26.

          • OLLPOH ~ OurLifeLiberty

            It may be sad. The question is are people going to school to learn what their natural talents are and they are really interested in the topic or subject being taught? We say this because we only hope that the brain is a sponge for you and that very good communication is the ability to share what you have learned, with others.
            Spreading one’s knowledge is what we are here on this planet for, not to lay down a claim of ‘already knowing everything in the class’. You could be an Aide in this class, You might visit with the Prof. and ask after class or maybe start a study group. Information about any topic or subject is not to be siloed or coveted. There is virtually no one person who knows all about any thing or any topic. We all have to understand our imperfections and not shield ourselves from making mistakes, or take on a superior attitude or ego. Without realizing that you too will not always be successful, states that you to will have to work harder at what ever the situation or problem may be in life.
            Without failure, or mistakes, how would anyone know what a success is?
            Gravity is proof. What goes up will come down.
            Failure is not permanent. It is to destroy ones self believing that you always have to win, when you slighted yourself in not helping another better understand a topic that you feel more knowledgeable in. Yes, the Valedictorians are great, how many are there in each graduating class and it may lead to something better, yet. We only travel through life this way but one time. Dress rehearsals are not needed.

          • autdrew4real

            I just went back myself. I scored a 99 on the reading & a 99 on the writing portions on the placement test. I missed the score to get into college algebra by 5 pts. Math has ALWAYS been incomprehensible to me. The only reason I scored that high was because they allow the use of calculators.
            My math book still makes no sense & my teacher is terrible at explaining things. She assigns homework for things we haven’t gone over at all. Not the best strategy for folks in basic (not the remedial) math class. Now she tells me that she thinks I have dyscalcula. She is dyslexic and noticed my mistakes aren’t so much in comprehension, I write down wrong numbers, reverse the orders etc.
            Sad to say, some of us really, really need the teacher to go back over some things.
            I also graduated from Detroit Public Schools lol

          • Kari Sanborn

            My daughter(now 21) went through the same thing. She took a yr off, took the placement test & it put her in the lowest class. Her last class in h.s. was statistics/trigonometry!!! She had a great teacher who told her it was ok to just show up on the days they turned homework. Her book was identical to her 5th grade brother’s book & YES, people in the class still needed long explanations on the stuff!

      • http://www.artinphoenix.com/gallery/grimm snowleopard (the true one)

        Common Core is one more means of the progressives to dumb down the children of this generation, and to indoctrinate them to the ideology of the left.

        Control and power over the youth, that is all that Common Core is about in the end.

        • chewinmule

          The added benefit is you will not be able to help kids with their work, thereby proving what kids have been subliminally “taught” for years …… their parents are “stoopid and can’t think properly”!

          • Adela Wagner

            That’s EXACTLY what my hubs and were just talking about after I called him in here to look at those problems. This will drive a further wedge between parents and children and the preferred outcome is to show kids that they must depend on their “progressive” teachers and Gov’t for the “right” answers.
            Parents MUST attend school board meetings and join a local anti-common core group.
            Or better yet, push for vouchers or homeschool before they make it illegal.

          • http://www.chaosandcritters.com Ella Halligan

            Yeah, we pulled our kids out this year. I showed the top picture on this page to all of our kids… the three oldest at home said, “That’s insane!” and then the 4th grader said, “That’s how they taught us!” which completely explains why I’ve been having massive fits from her when I make her actually drill on her math facts through 12s… (although after about a month of straight drills she is finally saying “Oh, I get this!”) The bottom picture got a thumbs down from all four of them.

          • ceyanne

            I will admit that when it comes to math, I AM “stoopid”. I began struggling in 3rd grade and the bottom fell out in 4th. And then it was horrible the rest of my educational duration. However, despite the fact that my kids know that they cannot count on me for help in Math, I can kick a$$ in any other subject they toss at me. They will NEVER have the perception that I am stupid and can’t think properly. Unless it involves math. ;o)

      • thedestroyer

        I recently took an Astro class and without any effort got 98.7. was amazed at the number of kids in the class that struggled!

      • poopjuice

        What point are you trying to make? How do you believe this will help?

        • Jake Wilde

          You may be the most objective individual I’ve ever come across or not, but I know there is no way I can get past your nick and take you seriously. My implied point is merely we have failed the kids. We keep looking at Commoncore for excuses and even though I do think it is awful and not for American school systems, neglecting history makes any society susceptible to making similar mistakes as they have in the past. Without knowing and understanding history we are doomed to fail. I’ll leave you with the legal first slave owner in America by stripping the rights of another. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anthony_Johnson_%28colonist%29

      • SkyePuppy

        The kids’ ignorance may be, in part, due to their major. Most of them are majoring in alcohol overindulgence. It’s really hard to do well in non-major subjects.

      • James Hay

        I graduated from H.S. in 65. Went to college beginning in ’76 and already saw the same thing. Straight 4.0 and all I did was take notes and study them the morning of the tests. I can only imagine what it is now with the liberals fully in charge of how our children learn. Don’t let them bring you down to them!

    • http://www.thereisagod.webs.com/ Derek Lockhart

      well, obviously that 6 has a college degree in mathematics, whereas other 6s do not. Unfortunately, the other 6s went through Common Core, and are now all under the impression that they are really 4s who are just “that special”.

    • Stephanie Warren

      All I got was a hug question mark hovering over my head. I can’t make heads or tails of this.

  • djvexd

    So THIS is how the gov’t reconciles it’s finances. …hmmm

    • peteee363

      these examples were only adding small numbers, I can’t imagine how they would use this new math to add large numbers, in the trillions?

      • annieoakley

        The teacher won’t know how to write a trillion.

        • GilaMonster1962

          sure he/she will…

          1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7,…. 8,….. um…. 9…. ummmm…. a LOT!

  • Chris King

    there was math.
    then there was “new” math.
    and there is now “progressive” math.
    amazing those to have a claim on progress.

    • j p✓ʳᵉᶠʳᶦᵉᵈ

      Pythagoras would be stunned.

      • QWYS (Hydralisk of the Swarm)

        You might even say he would be vertexed….

        I love math humor.

        • John W.

          There are 10 kinds of people in the world – those who understand binary numbers, and those who don’t.

    • illannoy

      I always felt that New Math was an insidious way to make kids believe their parents didn’t know anything. Of course, that always happens anyway; but it happened at much earlier ages when their parents couldn’t make head or tails out of the stupid system. My two were fortunate to have been in school during “Back to Basics,” so only algebra was taught so that I couldn’t help them. It will be interesting to see if those parents who had to learn New Math in the 60’s can cope with Stupidity Math now.
      We used to have to recite the multiplication tables on the way to school in our “ride group” with a different mom driving the bunch of us each day. Oh, no! Don’t memorize anything! That might lead to oral histories after all the history books have been Communized or Sharia-ized or just Progressived.
      Diagramming sentences was taught in several grades, including freshman high school and a class in junior year called College Preparation. It always drew groans from those who went on to be teachers themselves, so you can imagine it was taught less and less as years went on. Apparently punctuation, spelling and the correct use of tenses fell by the wayside as well, judging from e-mails.

      • dinkerduo

        My kids were caught up in the New Math experiment—it didn’t last long–thank God!!
        ?what you say–overseer is a perfect
        example–if Obozo lasts another 3 1/2 years it very well could get to Agenda 21! He’s trying!

  • Richard J Sunkle

    Seems to me that these are designed to make the kids feel helpless without their government certified “instructor”.

    • QWYS (Hydralisk of the Swarm)

      Coming soon, “Teachers will no longer be called teachers, but rather, “handler”, err, “indoctrinators”, err, “knowledge navigators”,

      • Vickie DHaene


        • QWYS (Hydralisk of the Swarm)

          Ok, that has to be the most disturbing single word response I’ve ever seen.

          You are exactly right. Let me offer up a synonym — overseer.

          • Vickie DHaene

            Read: Brave New World. Answers are there.

          • Clayton Grant

            Aldous Huxley was a true visionary.

          • QWYS (Hydralisk of the Swarm)

            Hey don’t leave out THX-1138. Given my choice of THX-1138 or BNW, well, pass the soma pls.

          • Brent Guthrie

            ….there is always Soma, delicious soma, half a gramme for a half-holiday, a whole gramme for a weekend, two grammes for a trip to the gorgeous East, three for a dark eternity on the moon.

          • j p✓ʳᵉᶠʳᶦᵉᵈ

            Damn, where’s my Soma? I am sorely in need of that and a pneumatic girl.

          • Zane Henry

            “Alpha children wear grey. They work much harder than we do, because
            they’re so frightfully clever. I’m really awfully glad I’m a Beta,
            because I don’t work so hard. And then we are much better than the
            Gammas and Deltas. Gammas are stupid. They all wear green, and Delta
            children wear khaki. Oh no, I don’t want to play with Delta children.
            And Epsilons are still worse.”

            Scary stuff, indoctrination and learned helplessness.

        • Johnny


      • Clayton Grant

        Knowledge Navigators … thats a liberal government job if there ever was one.

      • autdrew4real

        In some places they are “facilitators” because teacher-student was too hierarchical. I wish I could remember where I read that one

    • j p✓ʳᵉᶠʳᶦᵉᵈ

      Following the trend of naming bills for the opposite of what they actually do (Affordable Care Act), “Teachers” now fits perfectly.

    • dinkerduo

      Sadly—it doesn’t take much!

  • QWYS (Hydralisk of the Swarm)

    And people wonder why we have a staggering percentage of our population in prison. I’m a computer scientist, an abstract mathematician, and those examples are mind boggling, especially that second one.

    Can you say numerical bases? We are working with {Z+} in base 10, therefore 26 + 17 = 20 + 10 + 6 + 7 = 43

    There is no “pick a number” in mathematics, unless you are building a random number generation algorithm.

    • Michael Anderson (WB)

      The second one is a poor wordy explanation of how to add in your head. The concept there is actually good.

      Rather than add and carry in your head which is prone to mistakes, subtract from one number to make the second a multiple of 10. In this case subtract 4 from 17 and add the 4 to 26.

      26 + 17 = (26 + 4) + (17 – 4) = 30 + 13

      The right hand side is easier to add in your head.

      • QWYS (Hydralisk of the Swarm)

        Completely disagree with you on this one. It can be done that way, but I don’t believe it is teaching the basics, its a set of tricks that don’t have a basis in number theory.

        As you noted above, it is easy in hex — it is also very easy in binary. Stick with numerical bases (decimal, hexadecimal, binary or if you really want to see some magic, a 3 digit system where the valid symbols are { 1, 0, -1} and then exponential places.

        If you get this down as a young person, the rest of math will just fall into place. I was taught this way, and when I teach this to a young person I am tutoring, and they master it, their grades get a full level boost or more.

        Math is a language in and of itself. It has a complex syntax that requires understanding of fundamental characteristics of numbers.

        • Michael Anderson (WB)

          It’s not a set of tricks, it’s the concept that the equation must be balanced. What you give to one must necessarily be taken from another. That concept applies equally well to government handouts and taxes.

          • QWYS (Hydralisk of the Swarm)

            I’m sorry but it is a set of tricks. You don’t have to make a ten, you have tens and ones in the problem already. Satirist got it correct, I explained it a different way.

            It is basic number theory, and its not being taught, and this is why the US has fallen so far behind. Tricks of any kind have no place in the teaching of mathematics and pick a number to make a ten, then adding the tens and subtracting what was added is not theoretically correct.

            Addition does not involve subtraction. Now, subtraction does involve addition due to the nature of one number being comparatively larger than another, and hence the need to borrow a unit from the next higher unit.

            I don’t disagree that it can be done this way, but it doesn’t teach number theory. Convoluting things to include the concept of balanced equations is way beyond what kids being taught this way can understand intuitively, rather than simply because they were told it was so.

          • Michael Anderson (WB)

            Tricks are like how to multiply by 11*. This is an important principle of math. In this problem it is easier to take (10+20) + (6+7), but it is just as valid and important to learn that what you take from one part of the same side of the equation must be added back to another part. It’s analogous to balancing the sides of the equation.

            * mn x 11 = m(m+n)n e.g. 23 x 11 = 253

          • QWYS (Hydralisk of the Swarm)

            No, there is no trick that is an important principle in math.

            I was never taught to multiply by 11s. I was taught to multiply and with the basics I could simply multiply by 11 or 13, or 31 or any other number.

            23 x 11 = ( 23 x 1 ) + (23 x 10 ) = 253. No tricks required, no special formulas that need to be memorized, numerical bases and exponentiation.

            Yes, you get the right answer, but you’ve learned a trick, that is actually exactly what I did, but no tricks. factoring of values is algebra, not basic multiplication.

            Do you have a math degree?

          • Michael Anderson (WB)

            Exactly. The multiplying by 11 is a trick. Recognizing that numbers are simply sums of other numbers is a principle of math.

          • schnydz

            I have to agree with QWYS. We need to teach basics first. Tricks and mental math is nice, but not essential. Should only be taught once a foundation has been set. Heck, I wasn’t even introduced to mental math until early high scrhool.

          • Jeff McCabe

            except this particular example is not a trick. Its how people add numbers in their head. His multiplying by 11 is a trick. This is basic math, explained really poorly.

          • QWYS (Hydralisk of the Swarm)

            Wait, I’m confused — are you saying my approach is a trick. The “he” is ambiguous and I’m taking demerol.

          • LJ

            I looks to me that is exactly what they are doing, trying to integrate algebraic principles to basic arithmetic. Personally I like it. I think the wording is poor but from my brief stint as an algebra teacher I got alot of “I dont remember” rudimentary factorization is a good anti memorization tool in arithmetic. Ofcourse I loved abstract algebra so I may be (and probably am) in the minority

        • One Small Voice


          I enjoyed reading your comments and rebuttals. They are very entertaining and easy to follow and understand.

          I have gone back to school after graduating 26 years ago. My downfall is the math. When I was in the 9th grade my family moved from Ohio to Florida and the standard for Florida was around three years behind the rest of the country. Needless to say, I never learned the basics of algebra or beyond.

          I’m currently taking Elementary Algebra at my local community college. I’ve told anyone that would listen that I feel like I’m trying to learn a different language and it’s just not sinking in. Since my class is strictly online, I end up working on it during the evenings after the kid has gone to bed. Binomials and Trinomials have given me permanent Tourette Syndrome. I tell my kid that if he hears any yelling or screaming after he’s gone to bed that he should just ignore it! Ha. Too bad you aren’t local. I’d be tempted to hire you as my tutor!

          • QWYS (Hydralisk of the Swarm)

            I appreciate the kind words. You know where I can be found if you have a question that I might be able to answer.

          • autdrew4real

            You & I have a lot in common. My class is on campus & I feel like a dolt. I went to Detroit Public school & got lost at 3rd grade when we started fractions. I’ve tried very hard to get it, but I just don’t speak math. My brain doesn’t seem to recognize that language anymore than I recognized hangul in Seoul.

      • ceemack

        Geez, that’s a horrible way to add in your head. You’d simply add up the ones, add up the tens, and then add the two sums together. So 26+17 becomes (6+7) + (20+10), and then 13 + 30.

        • Heather Westerberg Doiron

          Lol, that’s exactly what I thought they were talking about when I saw the first sentence. Then, I read the whole thing and thought ‘huh’?

          I was a computer science major and math minor, so I understand math. :) This is … something else.

        • Peakview

          Just add 10 and then add 7 to the 26. Far easier to explain this to any kid and it is the proper base 10 distribution of 17. Any other way makes a person hold multiple answers in their head simultaneously and increases the risk of error.

      • Johnny

        I always add the 5’s into 10’s, add the 10’s together and then add the remainders……I agree the second example is a poorly written example. But why do we need to explain numbers in this way. I think it’s confusing to jumble wording and math problems together in an attempt to demonstrate HOW to do it. The clearest example is the last one you showed. If people want to learn math the most logical way is to teach them how to count, show them what the signs mean and then write the problem out in it’s simplest form. I don’t need a novel to be written on the subject to figure out how to group…….

      • eick74

        Why not just do it this way then:

        26 + 17 = (26 + 7) + (17 – 7) = 33 + 10


        26 + 17 = (26 – 6) + (17 + 6) = 20 + 23

        The common core example, you have to figure out what to take from one number to make the other number a multiple of ten, when it is easier to reduce one number to a multiple of ten and add what you took away to the other number.

        • Michael Anderson (WB)

          Any simplification is valid. The most obvious is:
          26 + 17 = (26 – 6) + (17 – 7) + (6 + 7) = 20 + 10 + 13 = 43

      • http://Paterzplace.blogspot.com/ DonM

        26 + 17 = 23 + 3 + 17= 23+20= 43

      • RKae

        What the f*ck? Why not just stack the 26 on top of the 17 and add them vertically? That’s how they trained me. It’s called “place value” for a reason!

    • AMERICAN Kafir™ ✓ certified

      Wouldn’t the 6+7=13 also be a base of 10, so you could say then, 20+10+10+3? Even easier.

      • QWYS (Hydralisk of the Swarm)

        If that is what works in your head — sure, all you’ve done is realized that 6+7 results in a carry and executed it. You are still working from theory here. *hands KAdams a shiny gold star*

        • AMERICAN Kafir™ ✓ certified

          *waves shiny gold star around* I was horrible at math until I got a job in Hospitality… Balancing the daily revenue during the audit shift at a full service hotel learns you real good (and fast, if you want to keep your job) how to do math and you can figure out all kinds of shortcuts. I was always more of a reading and comprehension person… so my yearly tests at school would tell me.

    • D7689

      Fascinating exchange here.

      I think the key argument is how one calculates 6 + 7.

      QWYS argues, and I agree, that one should not need any assistance to know 6 + 7 = 13.

      MA, on the other hand, argues that people are stupid enough to always need help in calculating 6 + 7. Hence all the extra steps to subtract from one number to make the second a multiple of 10, be it 6 + 7 = 6 + (4 + 3) = (6 + 4) + 3 = 10 + 3 = 13 or 6 + 7 = (3 + 3) + 7 = 3 + ( 3 + 7) = 3 + 10 = 13.

      Maybe MA has a point. Maybe the new generation is really that stupid not to be able to handle arithmetic as simple as this 6 + 7. I don’t know.

    • http://steamcommunity.com/id/pwag42 Swagner

      Thank you! I am so tired of policy writers who’ve never taken any math higher than “remedial” in college deciding that they know the best way to teach those courses. Dangit, I could do a better job at it, and I haven’t even finished my CS degree yet…

  • Clayton Grant

    What the heck was wrong with;
    7 + 6 = 13, carry the 1
    1 + 2 + 1 = 4

    • QWYS (Hydralisk of the Swarm)

      Ah, somebody can say numerical bases! *hands satirist a shiny gold star for his work*

    • therealguyfaux ✓ᵛᵉʳᶦᶠᶦᵉᵈ

      Now here’s how you do it if you wanna get real technical about it: (20 + 6) + (10 + 7), arranged in columns; comes to (30 + 13), equal to (30 + 0) + (10 + 3) = (40 + 3) = 43,

      That’s how you teach the theory of tens and units– it makes learning subtraction just a smidge easier. It’s how I learned it, in the 1960’s– in a parochial school, I might add.

      But WTF is “borrowing” doing, in addition?

      • Guest

        I think what they are trying to show is a different way of explaining “New Math”, as if something was wrong with the old way of teaching it.
        Take 3 from the 26 to give to the 17 and thus equal 20. The 26 is now 23, and when added 20 + 23 = 43. It can be done in your head with large numbers.

        • QWYS (Hydralisk of the Swarm)

          20 + 10 + 6 + 7 = 43, much more straight forward, with a repeatable process that requires not taking or giving … it is exactly how math works.

          I don’t believe they are trying to explain or teach math, I believe the approach espoused in the common core is the fundamental equivalent of teaching reading but not teaching phonetics; or teaching reading comprehension without sentence diagramming. It produces people with knowledge but no understanding or wisdom. No ability to expand beyond what the teacher assigns. No love of math or words for the sake of the numbers and meanings.

          Teaching someone to get a correct answer is not the same as teaching someone mathematics.

          When I was a kid, we didn’t have Sylvan Learning Centers, MathLab, etc. The basics were taught from a slow and steady introduction to the theory.

          • grais

            They don’t teach children How To Learn.

          • Johnny

            Indeed Sir! Teaching without any substance…… A foundation is necessary for any base of knowledge to grow into a larger form. You can’t grow an apple without having a tree to grow it from. You can’t grow that tree without planting a seed first. The seed in this case being the fundamentals of Math. Once a person is armed with the fundamentals of anything they can expand on that knowledge using their own mind.

        • grais

          And they want to show a different way of doing it so they can feel relevant. It has to do with child-like attention span and ego.

          This will end up like the Whole Language fiasco of 20-some-odd years ago.

          • Guest


          • grais

            Much worse. From what I can remember of all the fun we made of it, you throw out phonics and individual words. You just sorta look at a page of written words and get a ‘feel’ of it.

            Or something.
            CA, having tried it for a decade, admitted that it was a completely failed experiment. (Those poor children)
            Right after that admission, the great state of NJ adopted it.

            My own child was under strict instruction to play along at school, but to otherwise ignore it.

          • QWYS (Hydralisk of the Swarm)

            Yes, you got it right. My children were not taught phonics by the overseers, they were taught to recognize words by pattern matching.

            I taught them phonics, and sentence diagraming.

          • grais

            There are far too many things that they’ll only be taught at home.

            My son was fortunate. He had got the basics before the lunatic-fringe teaching really kicked in. He actually got a lot of language basics before he started school. He’s very linguistically talented, but like his mother, he’s pretty much a math illiterate.

          • Guest

            Good for you, and moreso, your child.

          • autdrew4real

            HATE whole language! My daughter started kindergarten in San Diego 2001. They had recently realized the fiasco whole language was yet didn’t want to give it up. They had a ‘hybrid’ of whole language with some phonics.
            I kept expressing concern & was reassured that she would “get it”. The did not correct spelling. They did not do tests, they didn’t really learn to read well either. I finally pulled her & moved to a different district. They put an end to creative spelling, allowing her to reverse her letters (in 2nd grade they still weren’t correcting this!). Luckily, she’s a smart kid & an honor student in her senior yr now. She was able to catch up. It’s sad to see all those kids who were unable to move to a new district that still taught blue spells blue not bloo,blu, bool are all equally valid. Eyeroll

        • schveiguy

          You see, 17 had a hard life, and is on welfare. And you 1-percenters ONLY want to give him 3. The only FAIR way to solve this is to give him 7, and then you get 19 + 24. But of course, that problem’s too difficult for 17 to figure out, so we just pick other numbers that are easier, 2 + 2. The other 39 go to pay for obamacare. Any questions?

      • radicallyalyssa

        That’s what we called the Associative Property of Addition in fifth grade.

      • GilaMonster1962

        It’s NOT borrowing… It’s “investing” by China…

    • Michael Anderson (WB)

      It’s easier in hex

      26 = 0x1A
      17 = 0x11

      0x1A + 0x11 = 0x2B = 32 + 11 = 43

      • Guest

        The problem with hex is that some systems used a 0 for zero while others used the 16, swapping F. Outside of the computer, IRL, you can’t do everyday math without a constant.

        • Michael Anderson (WB)

          OK fine I’ll do it in binary:

          BTW, don’t count to 132d in binary on your fingers, it’s very impolite.

          • QWYS (Hydralisk of the Swarm)

            See you do agree with me! bases and exponentiation!

    • grais

      dat ol skuul

    • HWarrior13

      “Guys”….can we please stop fighting over math and get back to ousting the Socialists in our educational system ?
      We need you smarties to use your skills to combat the enemy.
      Thank you :-)

      • Michael Anderson (WB)

        Even with common core, the “socialists” teaching in my school district have taught the importance of the second amendment for the freedom of the nation. We also voted as a state to allow teachers to be armed in the classroom.

        • HWarrior13

          Impressed that your corner of the world has some common sense and respects the Bill of Rights…but what about the rest of us who aren’t as fortunate as you, brother ?
          United we stand, etc… no ?

        • Guest

          You’re in AR then? Will schools still have a police liaison on campus?

      • QWYS (Hydralisk of the Swarm)

        Sorry, you lost me — we are fighting them right now by what we are doing here.

        • Guest

          Truth is power.

      • Stephen L. Hall #NonquamTrump

        Math is more fun than socialists. But to be fair, so is a root-canal.

    • schveiguy

      Anyone notice that this line:

      “Think: 17 = 4 + 13”

      Is F**KING ALGEBRA!???

      Like “just think of how to do algebra, and you will get the answer, 3rd grader”

      When you are trying to figure out what number to add to 4 to get 17, use 13. DUH! What brilliance! I love that explanation.

      Or even better: If you want to add two 2-digit numbers together, first learn algebra, then it will be simple!

      Our public schools are in trouble…

      • panzerakc

        I must be a complete dinosaur then, because if I were trying to figure out what number to add to 4 to get 17, I’d, I dunno, subtract 4 from 17.

        • schveiguy

          Because you are using algebra.

          17 = 4 + x

          Solve for x (yes, subtract 4 from both sides, you get the answer).

          What they say is:

          “Think: 17 = 4 + 13”

          Where 13 is the number you are looking for. It’s almost like they say “just think of 13,” without explaining how. This is NOT easy for a 3rd grader.

    • http://lordfoggybottom.com Lord Foggybottom

      It makes sense and is logical. That’s what’s wrong with it. Uh, duh!

  • Sus

    My youngest was subjected to this type of math in middle school (young, progressive teacher). Common Core is not adopted as part of the curriculum, however he continues to teach it.
    Parents need to be engaged.

    • QWYS (Hydralisk of the Swarm)

      And school board members that adopt this nonsense need to be tarred, feathered, and run out of town on a rail.

  • ASkinner49

    To be honest, I do simple math like this. However, I am not arrogant enough to say that everyone should do it this way. I’ve tried to explain it several times to my husband and he still thinks it doesn’t make sense. I know I think differently from most people and this is not the way to go about teaching math fundamentals.

  • canb0nly1

    How are these future bureaucrats supposed to learn how to take extremely simple concepts and make them complicated enough to build entire governmental agencies around them if they don’t start when they are young.

    • QWYS (Hydralisk of the Swarm)

      Tyrants love unarmed, uneducated, illiterate peasants.

  • Wayne

    Maybe this is why we don’t get to see POTUS college records.

    • QWYS (Hydralisk of the Swarm)

      LOL, you nailed it. Forget the college transcripts, I want to see his primary education transcripts.

      • Wayne

        Uh Oh, you probably have to go to Indonesia for those.

  • http://chrishowie.com/ Chris Howie

    “The important thing is to understand what you’re doing rather than to get the right answer.”

  • The Masked Avatar

    This is the kind of stuff you experience when you approach the event horizon to a black hole.

  • Joe_in_Indiana

    Looks a little like the “New Math” from the 70’s that really screwed up students at that time.

  • toongoon

    Mind conditioning to be perfectly confused Democrat voters.

  • Kickass Conservative

    Disclaimer: Common Core scares the hell out of me.

    But: what the tweeted photo is showing is what we’ve taught in Mental Math for years.

    Get down to the 10, then subtract what’s left.

    15-7 is the same as 15-5, then 10-2.

    Now, of course, you HAVE to lay VERY good groundwork so that kids understand the relationships between any number and zero (or 10, or 20)…and the 5 and 2 and 7 are all “family.”

    Of course, good teachers have been teaching these “tricks” for years, and the kids enjoy knowing them. Common Core, though, is the result of not-real-educators trying to make a one-size-fits-all approach to what should have been taught in the classroom from the get-go.

    TL;DR: If your teacher is teaching Mental Math and your kid is motivated about it, support him/her. If its just Common Core teach-to-the-test crap being rammed down your kids’ throats (and your kids have recently lost their love for learning), grab some pitchforks and torches.

    Oh and: Homeschool or private school your kids, people! You don’t get do-overs when they turn 18….

    • Gifted Placebo

      Exactly right. When I look at 26+17 I think 30+20=50 but I had to round up 26 and 17 to do that, which means I need to subtract the difference of rounding back out.


      I round 26 to 30 and 17 to 20.
      But, I added 4 to get from 26 to 30.
      But, I added 3 to get from 17 to 20.
      So I added a total of 7 into my problem
      So I need to subtract 7 from my rounded answer.

      But, you have to have a clear understanding of basic math in order to understand this shortcut concept! Basics before shortcuts – always!

      • MNWoman

        I think it is important to understand that for mental math, everyone will have their own way that works best.

        Whenever I need to add a number to 9, I instead add that number to 10 and know I automatically have to subtract 1.

        For example, 9+8=17, so I would use 10+8= 18 and then know I need to automatically subtract 1.

        That may not work for some, but we all develop our own ways of making things work. And that is why common core will not work.

        • illannoy

          Hah! My older brother used “combinations” to get the answers: If a 9 is involved, that last number will be 1 less in addition, 1 more in subtraction (14+9 =23; 14-9 = 5). Any time the two numbers to be added end with a 6 and a 7, the answer will end in 3, since 6 + 7 =13. And anything multiplied by 5 will end in 5. That’s not a trick, is it?

      • grais

        I’m the first to admit that math can give me white knuckles, but all that seems to me to just add extra steps.

      • illannoy

        But isn’t addition generally easier than subtraction? It was for me, but then that was when we were using lumps of coal to scratch answers on rocks:)

    • schveiguy

      I have a huge problem with the “terminology”. WTF is a ‘subtraction sentence’?

      Bottom line and lesson here – teach your kids how to do math HOWEVER they want. If they get the right answer, it’s right, no matter what method is used. And homeschooling all the way.

    • autdrew4real

      The groundwork is the problem. They seem to be skipping the fundamentals and going straight for this

  • Gifted Placebo

    It is a valid approach, but I’ve never seen it explained so horribly in my entire life. Also, this shouldn’t be the primary method kids learn for addition. In math there are often many different ways to look at a problem. Teaching alternate methods as the primary method, without kids mastering basics is a core problem with Common Core math. It is why my wife and I have spent countless hours unteaching our kids and reteaching them basic tried and true method (what teachers now are apparently referring to as “traditional” math). Well, traditional math made my son the only one with the correct answer at the board the other day, so I’ll take “traditional” over “fuzzy” “progressive” math every day of the week.

    • QWYS (Hydralisk of the Swarm)

      I disagree that it is a valid approach. Teaching basic math skills with this sort of a technique is going to make it very hard for the students when it comes time to chemistry and physics.

      It should taught via numerical bases and simple number theory; otherwise I believe it will be nearly impossible for the students to truly master advanced math and the physical sciences. Numbers are all about relations, and the techniques above do not seem to address that.

      • Jeff McCabe

        he means its a valid approach to achieve the correct answer, which it is. But not explained well and not the first option in teaching someone how to do basic math. You are both essentially saying the same thing.

        • QWYS (Hydralisk of the Swarm)

          Again, disagree — valid approach. This approach is all about picking a non-theory based random association and if you pick wrong, well, you still got it right.

          You are defending common core. Common Core produces drones, not educated free thinkers.

      • Michael Anderson (WB)

        The second example is all about relations and patterns. It poorly explains:
        26 + 17 = (26 + 4) + (17 – 4) = 30 + 13
        That concept is critical, too bad it’s so poorly explained.

      • Gifted Placebo

        If you re-read my post, I think you’ll see that I agree with you. Basics first, then think about teaching shortcuts/alternate methods.

        “Teaching alternate methods as the primary method, without kids mastering basics is a core problem with Common Core math.”

        • QWYS (Hydralisk of the Swarm)

          Yes, I did notice that, but I was not able to reconcile it with your opening, “It is a valid approach”; if you note that is only phrase in your post where I had a point of contention.

          • Gifted Placebo

            It’s a fairly common approach in mental math, which is why I said it is valid. Rounding numbers to numbers that are easier to do in your head and then reconciling at the end. Granted, this is simple addition, but the concept is sound. Explained absolutely horribly on this paper, and even if explained properly, not appropriate for most students.

          • QWYS (Hydralisk of the Swarm)

            be that as it may — common does not mean it teaches basic number theory. I can teach a person to do nearly anything by tricks — addition via rounding a subtraction. Yes, it produces the correct answer.

            Ask the average 8 grader about numerical bases and exponentiations and they say “what?”

            This is the problem, and common core will make it even worse.

          • Gifted Placebo

            Absolutely agree with you. Common Core replaces fundamentals with magic and trickery that none of the students can explain because they lack basic skills.

            Real world story from my son who is in 5th grade:
            Several kids go to the board to work out a multiplication problem – 3 digit number times 2 digit number. My son, using the traditional method we all learned in elementary school starts the problem. When gets to the second line, other kids start saying “what is he doing – you can’t do that!”. The teacher let him continue. He completed the problem with the correct answer. The other kids at the board were using the Common Core method – breaking the numbers apart and adding all sorts of things together. My son said the other students worked for another 7 minutes. None of them got the right answer. Disgraceful.

          • QWYS (Hydralisk of the Swarm)

            An upvote with a sad heart … we are so screwed.

  • Julius500

    Is the purpose of Common Core to increase drop out rate?

    • toongoon

      I think it is increase the graduation rate regardless of ability.

  • http://macsen573.wix.com/overdrive Macsen Overdrive ✓re-rolled

    Yeah, that is a rather bass-ackward way of doing things.

  • MNWoman

    For the first question, I pick answer B.

    Why? Because it made me feel happy.

    • ObamaFail

      And you have broken the code to Common Core. It’s to teach kids the liberal method of thinking with your emotions instead of your brain.

    • grais

      The whole thing gave me a headache.

  • ObamaFail

    Next, Common Core will change math again to where adding to a number makes it a smaller number. Kind of like how liberals believe Obama adding trillions to the national debt has cut it in half.

  • Jeff McCabe

    both examples make sense neither example is well explained though.

  • http://youhavetobethistalltogoonthisride.blogspot.com/ keyboard jockey

    The purpose of Common Core is to “condition” people so it’s possible to you know nudge them into what the government consider’s acceptable behavior. It’s nothing more than more government social engineering.

    Have a look at a study that explains common core curriculum that measures “emotional intelligence”

    “That is the conclusion of a study published Thursday in the journal Science. It found that after reading literary fiction, as opposed to popular fiction or serious nonfiction, people performed better on tests measuring empathy, social perception and emotional intelligence.”

    Think about that – how do you control the populace? You condition them to think with their “Feelings? Not you know their brains using reason and logic.

    Consider that the left manipulates the public through “emotion” to get their votes. They want to use common core to condition and manipulate the populace when it is most impressionable adolescence. No wonder people are looking for any other option for their children than the centralized government run public school.


    • QWYS (Hydralisk of the Swarm)

      Is emotional intelligence the ability to recognize when the government is screwing you?

      • http://youhavetobethistalltogoonthisride.blogspot.com/ keyboard jockey

        empathy = democrat
        voting democrat = emotional intelligence

    • panzerakc

      And how does one measure empathy, social perception, and emotional intelligence?

      • http://youhavetobethistalltogoonthisride.blogspot.com/ keyboard jockey

        Their voting record – if they are registered democrat’s and they vote straight party ticket/

  • jukin

    Use a root vegetable that adds to a color to find a number.


    • ObamaFail

      Which is the method Obama used to determine the premiums costs for Obamacare.

    • QWYS (Hydralisk of the Swarm)

      Ok , second scariest post ever.

      Doublespeak applied to mathematics. *shiver*

  • Chris King

    USA: jimmy is failing math, we must help him catch up.
    korea: jimxing if failing math, let’s get him out of the way of smart kids.

    • ObamaFail

      With Common Core, it’s now:
      Jimmy is failing math, so let’s bring the rest of the kids down to his level so he won’t feel stupid. Let’s not build him up, let’s tear everyone else down.


        Thats it lower standards to lowesr achievers. Then or percentages of achievers will be increased. Dems vision of future is Super Gloom. Some Sick puppies

  • Jake Wilde

    I was going to post the NEAP statistics from the government study how kids only know 1% of advanced history, but the site is shut down. A non-interactable info site is shut down. lmao

  • ObamaFail

    it’s elementary school, why can’t they just start them out with the basic
    15-7=8. What is so wrong with just teaching kids that the answer is 8? Why do they have to make it a confusing sequence? Some kids will get it, but others won’t. Which is probably the point of common core, to breed the next generation of liberals.

  • TocksNedlog

    Why wouldn’t you do 26+4=30, 30+17=47, 47-4=43?

    • MNWoman

      If you look to my comment below, I have a response.

      This makes more sense to me than the examples used, but it is important to let people figure out a method that works best for them.

      This works well for you, but perhaps not for others, and that is okay. Common core will limit allowing students to explore a different way that works best for them.

      • TocksNedlog

        I agree. Your comment about how we all have our own ways of doing mental math is spot on.

  • MNWoman

    I think what Common Core is missing is the fact that we each have our own ways to do mental math.

    While I could understand the methods used, these would not normally be the methods I would prefer. I would much rather use my own methods to come up with the right answer.

    Some people may never quite get the hang of mental math. I am not an educator so I don’t know what the solution to that is, but to force people to accept one way of doing things when they may benefit from an alternative way is not going to help.

    • Julius500

      What! We aren’t all the same? That’s blasphemy!

  • Marjorie

    I attended school in the 50’s and 60’s in Scotland. Came here in the mid-sixties and wanted to go to college. Had to take the GED test to qualify. Scored in the ninety nine percentile and goodness knows I’m not academically gifted. I have seen some of the current UK text books and am appalled. My grandchildrens’ school books here are just as bad. I don’t believe funding has anything to do with the decline in academic standards. I think common sense, not common core is needed. Discipline and respect should be part of the learning process and the tunnel vision of liberal academia has no place in education.
    Sorry for the rant…I usually just read with an occasional comment but this really hit a nerve.

    • Clayton Grant

      I hereby award you every up vote ever given me. Take them. They are your’s.

      • Marjorie

        Wow…I get some of my up votes back. I always enjoy your wit and envy the snappy come backs. Thanks!

    • grais

      Don’t apologize. It was a lovely rant.

  • schveiguy

    I passed (with an A) all the way through Calc 5 when earning my Bachelor’s in Comp Sci. I seriously can’t figure out the answer. This is insane.

    • Michael Anderson (WB)

      The answer to the first is C. Like the second it’s not explained well, but the principle being taught in both is that numbers can be split as needed as long as the equation holds.

      For the first:
      15 – 7 = 15 – (5 + 2) = (15 – 5) – 2 = 10 – 2 = 8

      For the second:
      26 + 17 = (26 + 4) + (17 – 4) = 30 + 13 = 43

      If the principle here were properly taught it would be of great benefit, but the way it’s presented is more likely to confuse and discourage the kids.

      • schveiguy

        Right, the thing I didn’t get is that all the equations were correct!

        I would have guessed C because it yields the right answer, but that’s the only reason.

  • Kem Tekinay

    This is a good concept for doing math *in your head*. It’s actually (sort of) the way my dad taught me to do it, which is to break the problem down into smaller, easier to handle parts. My dad actually taught me to extract the “10” from the smaller number so this would have been 26 + 10 = 36, then 36 + 7. I’d hope this is explained better by a teacher than that form though.

    Having said that, I don’t like the idea of a top-down, centralized curriculum, even if I find some of the concepts they are teaching to be valid.

    • Stranded in Sonoma

      I would add them up the old fashioned way.

      26 + 17 = x
      20 + 10 = 30
      6 + 7 = 13
      30 + 13 = 43

      That has always worked for me.

      • Kem Tekinay

        So there are a number of approaches of which the Common Core paper above illustrates one. Whether it’s the “best” one is entirely subjective, but it’s not invalid, just badly illustrated.

    • http://rightontheleftcoast.wordpress.com/ missplace

      Exactly, this is really only useful for doing the problem in your head. How is this going to help kids add larger number or several numbers at once?

      • Kem Tekinay

        I assumed this was *only* for doing small problems in your head and the traditional approach would used for working them out on paper. If I’m wrong, then this is a horrible idea.

  • MartiniShark

    This basically explains how we get to a budgetary position of needing to raise the debt but it does not mean we’ll be raising the debt.

  • Canis Dirus

    I can count to 21 if I’m naked…..

  • TocksNedlog

    Does Common Core have a method for tallying the number of people that have successfully enrolled in Obamacare?

  • pairadimes

    If the goal is to render the entire population of public school students functionally math illiterate, we are on the right path.

    • QWYS (Hydralisk of the Swarm)

      I wish I could you up vote you more than once.

      Exactly! They can do their basic add, subtract, multiply, and divide but they don’t understand the theory behind what they are doing. Master basic number theory — number lines, numerical bases and exponentiation within a numerical base to produce values with more a single digit and a new world is now accessible.

  • Super Heroes

    It’s no longer “math” but “mathlish art.” See more samples of 1st grade math here http://armorandshield.blogspot.com/2013/10/common-core-mathlish.html

  • Stephen L. Hall #NonquamTrump

    I have a degree in Math. This is just plain stupid.

  • Right Wired ✓ᵛᵉʳᶦᶠᶦᵉᵈ

    26 + 17 = You’re going to be living in your parents basement until this age because no one will hire you.

  • Canis Dirus

    I got a copy of the new CommonCore Calculus book.

    I opened it up, and all it said was……….

    “Ask an Asian for the answer.”

  • MNWoman

    I was able to solve both questions, but not using either of the methods provided.

    I am guessing many of us here who got anwers used different methods, and some of the methods would not make sense to others. As long as we get the right answers and the method we use make sense to each of us, that is what matters.

    • JBDestiny

      Unfortunately, in class what matters is to understand what you’re doing, not getting the right answer.

  • disqus_eric

    I think the 43 problem is saying:
    26 + 17 = (20 + 6) + (10 + 7) = (20 + 6 + 4) + (10 + 7 – 4) = (30 + 13)

    Yeah, that works, but a simpler form would be:
    26 + 17 = (20 + 6) + (10 + 7) = (20 + 10) + (6 + 7) = (30 + 13)

    • Squirrel!

      For 3rd graders?

    • http://rightontheleftcoast.wordpress.com/ missplace

      Or they could just be taught to carry and borrow, as this method only really works for small numbers that you’re adding in your head on the fly. Any more complex addition will be far simpler with the traditional method.

    • Stephen L. Hall #NonquamTrump

      That is more traditional. The real problem is in the English phrasing of “subtraction sentences” rather than the concept of “carrying” & “borrowing.” The newer language is unnecessarily confusing and diverts from some of the basic concepts needed to properly learn the math. If they teach the properties of math, it doesn’t matter what path the mathematician uses.

    • dennylee60

      Or 26+17 = (20+6)+(10+4+3) =(20+10+6+4)+3. From what I was told the goal is to break things apart to make 10.

      • QWYS (Hydralisk of the Swarm)

        Not to make 10, but to use an exponentiated place within a number of a given numerical base. The basic theory is add the like exponents in each number, then add those together.

  • duchesslt

    what? omg – I need an IEP – I just know that 26+17 you carry over a one an keep adding…

  • Chris King

    can the kids that learned fractions in 2nd grade just skip this nonsense and head to college at 14 years old and such?

  • peteee363

    this makes my brain hurt, it was faster the old way, and left me without the large bump on my forehead!

  • Right Wired ✓ᵛᵉʳᶦᶠᶦᵉᵈ

    This is what how a 7 year old adds and subtracts in Japan:



    • QWYS (Hydralisk of the Swarm)

      And what is an abacus — it is a mechanical representation of numerical bases and exponentiation.

      This is why Japan ranks above the US in math and science.

      I have slipstick I use when I tutor, it focuses the student on number theory, precision, exponents and logarithms in physical manner. I have a 70 year old Log-Log Duplex Decitrig K+E slipstick. It is one of my valued tools.

      Picture attached. I even have the manuals. My father gave this to me when I started middle school. I had to learn to use it before he would allow me to have a calculator.

      • Right Wired ✓ᵛᵉʳᶦᶠᶦᵉᵈ

        Great story!

        I am admittedly terrible at math. But after dinners in college, I would sit in awe of my future wife and her girlfriends who would have impromptu abacus contests. Someone would say ‘52,454 x 87,978’. Go. and in seconds, someone would have the right answer.

        • QWYS (Hydralisk of the Swarm)

          I have on my bucket list to acquire an exquisite abacus that is as much a work of art as it is a tool for teaching or working.

          Haven’t found the right one yet.

  • Diane Stephan

    I live in NYS and when my daughter brings home her math book for homework, even I am stumped sometimes.

    • QWYS (Hydralisk of the Swarm)

      When I helped my kids with math, I would first figure out what the unit was trying to teach. Then I would teach my kids the theory behind the unit, then we’d work a few problems and reconcile against the the text book too make sure the overseer could not dock them points for doing things differently than the text book.

      • Diane Stephan

        She yells at me when I figure it out the “old school” way. She say’s that’s not how the teacher taught me to do it.

        • QWYS (Hydralisk of the Swarm)

          Yeah, been there before. But mine only yelled once.

  • Tavern Keepers

    I fear for our future.

  • http://www.thepiratescove.us/ William_Teach

    If you have $37 in food stamps left and a bottle of gin costs $9, what number do you call for an Obamaphone? #commoncoremathproblems

  • Stagester

    Reason #4,598,345 for not putting your child in the public indoctrination system. It is clear this is another example of the libs wanting to create new low information voters.

  • Chris King

    my 7th grade math book index entry for F: factor, factor theorem, factorial, factoring rules, falling bodies, finite, focal radius, foci of ellipse, foci of hyperbola, focus of parabola, FOIL, formula ………

    current 7th grade math book: family, fat content, finances, fraction, function of govt.

  • al hunt


  • Biff_Maliboo

    Can you answer all of these problems with ‘Obama’ for partial credit?

  • MindYourOwn

    Common, I’m just trying to get kids to understand rocket science at an early age. Republicans want to make math easy.

    • QWYS (Hydralisk of the Swarm)


  • HWarrior13

    HEY, WHAT GIVES ? When I joined the “Twitchy” community, I was assured there would be no math !
    Just LQQK at those “guys” down vvvv , they’re having a “math war”.
    *sigh* my head hurts.

    • MindYourOwn

      My brain hurts :-)

    • QWYS (Hydralisk of the Swarm)

      lol, guilty as charged. I am passionate about math.

      • HWarrior13

        “…passionate about math.”….lol…God love ya.

        I just thank God there was no math on the LSAT !

        • QWYS (Hydralisk of the Swarm)

          Passionate about words too — I was that kid you hated when the PSAT/SAT/ACT scores were posted.

          Satirist said it below. Knowledge is power. I tend so say knowledge is simply ordinance to be fired. Without wisdom it is worth nothing. But if you have knowledge and wisdom then you are a force to be respected. I’m still working on the Wisdom bit …

          • HWarrior13

            Not to worry, you actually were NOT the kid that I “hated when the PSAT/SAT/ACT scores were posted.”

            With regards to the SAT, etc:
            Not to toot my own horn too much…but let’s just say “toot toot”
            ” I’m still working on the Wisdom bit …”
            With “wisdom” comes humility, perhaps?

          • QWYS (Hydralisk of the Swarm)

            I think humility is a pre-requisite for wisdom.

          • HWarrior13

            I concur

  • Steve__Jacobson

    It has to be the goal of the creators of Common Core to make and keep children stupid.

  • dennylee60

    My son goes to a private and he learned math using the method above. It is called Singapore Math and iit is supposed to help th their number sense. I had had hard time with this when he first started and I have a MS in math. After working with it for a couple months, this method really worked with my son. With all that said the explaination and instruction above is terrible. If the kids do not learn the correct steps and process early on, they will not be able to do the later stuff and will grab the nearest calculator to do their homework.

    • DiabloDawg

      Is there an American English translation for this ebonics?

    • Brad Donald

      So all those 100s of years of education that have been proven to work before calculators existed should be thrown out.

      You are talking out your ass.

      • dennylee60

        I am not sure you understand my point. The above method is a lid teaching method not used in the US (hence the name I think) it seems that tthe Us is trying to adopt this system to teach math. The problemis that if it is not taught correctly the kids will not use e system and will opt to use a calculator instead.

        • Brad Donald

          Our schools are worse then ever because they stopped teaching the basics and rote memorization.

          Adding all this wishy washy ill conceived crap into the system that ends up teaching nothing will hurt our kids.

          I dont see how taking simple concept and complicating them to the point of confusion helps any one.

          • Brad Donald

            this is something you teach as a supplement. It should not be used as a core to teaching math.

  • Wag_a_Muffin (D)

    I am a substitute teacher. It is embarrassing when a 2nd grader asks you to explain the question from his/her math book and you can’t figure it out.

  • Sakemoto

    10 Trillion + 7 Trillion = Debt and Deficit reduction. I think I get it.

  • Casey Sullivan

    For your reference, the above-pictured #13 Common Sense problem was taken from Pearson enVisionMATH Common Core, 2nd grade, P3-5.

    • Clorinda

      That means it really is Common Core and not just stuff aligning to it. Pearson is the primary Common Core publisher.


    Just what in the world are they trying to teach here?

  • j p✓ʳᵉᶠʳᶦᵉᵈ

    Now wonder they can’t make change if the computers are down.

  • Mike Morgan

    It’s obvious the people who dreamed up this stuff smoke crack.

  • DiabloDawg

    The children will make the democrats excellent slaves.

  • Barry A. Brewer

    I agree Common Core is a deviltry foisted upon us, but I wuld say they are trying to get you to pick the 10-2=8

  • Vinny Boombatz

    If Leroy receives $850 from the government, has $184 subsidized housing expense, an Obamaphone, and receives $250 in food stamps each month, how big of a Cadillac can he buy?

  • Kyle Schroeck

    The 2nd one makes sense. I often think like that… the first one baffles me.

    • moonsbreath

      That’s funny. The first one made sense to me and the second made me pound my head against the wall. Poor kids.

  • Ben Kucenski

    And now adding is taught in a way that prepares you for multiplication to boot. I invented this method for a severely autistic kid who had mastered single digit addition but couldn’t move to two digit. This allowed him to do it but I don’t think he understood what he was accomplishing.

    • alanstorm

      Interesting. I came up with something similar years ago when I had to re-teach myself math after being out of school for many years. If you think about it, it’s basically making the “carry the one” into an explicit second step.

      Gotta love simple things that work.

  • moonsbreath

    Argh. This is worse than those dumb math word problems that would make my mind explode over 40 years ago, but this is worse. Home school.

  • $8203344

    I’m not that great at Math, but I don’t understand these.

  • j p✓ʳᵉᶠʳᶦᵉᵈ

    You know that memorization is now a dirty word (unless it is an ecology mantra or a hymn to Obama) so addition and multiplication tables are so last century. Better to have them try to remember many complex sets of instructions than a finite number of numerical axioms.

    • Red Fred

      Just learned that my 12 year old relative does not know her multiplication tables. Have they done away with that??

      • Brad Donald


        • QWYS (Hydralisk of the Swarm)

          Say good night Gracie …

      • j p✓ʳᵉᶠʳᶦᵉᵈ

        I think so in many places. I think I had to learn them by 9 years old back in the day.

  • Tom Warren

    So this is why kids are pushing on the door that says “pull”…..

  • Thomas Petty

    This is ridiculous. What about the old tried and true 6+7=13 Write down the 3 and carry the one. It even rhymes! This has all come about because some suit in some office had to demonstrate they had some value and decided to screw with success. Only morons and narcissists try to “improve” what already works.

    • Isabella1709

      That is now I learned arithmetic, along with memorizing times tables, and it has served me wonderfully until Algebra and then I struggled. Then I ran from Math, ironic because now I am an accountant!

  • LeftistsStink

    Is this the way math is taught in all those countries that score higher on standardized math tests than we do?

    • HWarrior13


      • Tavern Keepers

        No, this is extremely convoluted. We’ve homeschooled our daughter for the past 3 years, and when we began we started her out on the Singapore math curriculum. Now at 11 years old she in Algebra I… not pre-Algebra, Algebra I. Our state requires homeschool kids to take 2 standardized tests each year, one in the Fall and later in the Spring. She consistently scores in the 99th percentile (top 1% of the country) in her age group.

      • HWarrior13

        @Tavern Keepers: Not sure why your comment is awaiting moderation, that aside…
        Your daughter is behind my son, but you still have time to catch her up.
        She sounds like a good kid. Best of luck to her.

  • Undine

    I assume these questions were written by the same people who designed the Obamacare websites.

  • Sv3

    @hoffmanrich seriously, it doesn’t make sense to you?

    Here’s the break down.

    26 + 17 -> You borrow the 4 from 17 so that you get 30 by adding 4 to 26

    30 + 13 = 43

    Another example:
    28 + 19 -> You need 2 to make 28 to 30, so you borrow that from 19

    30 + 17 = 47

    You can do it another way by counting the 10s.
    In 26 + 17, you have four 10s.
    (10+10+6) + (10+7)
    (10+10+10) + (6+7)
    (10+10+10) + (10+3)
    So now you have;
    10+10+10+10+3 = 43

    This is why it’s 3rd grade math. You shouldn’t dropped out of school.

    • Brad Donald

      This is a horrible way to teach math.

      • Sv3

        Perhaps it is horrible to some, but the goal of the instruction is to give the students awareness on how numbers are associated and distributed — which prepares them to the higher level of calculations later on when they start learning Algebra.

    • Michelle ✓classified

      My impression of his comment wasn’t that he didn’t understand how to solve the problem, but that it makes no sense – what is the purpose of the problem to break the numbers down in 10s and add to what’s left?

      • Sv3

        It is because we use decimals (base 10) everywhere, it is our common number base system. Besides, it is easier for students to count by 10s, than by 6s, for example.

        One of the purpose is to prepare the students for algebraic expressions, finding the common denominators in fractions, or by simply counting cash. Breaking the numbers down is the easier way to solve the problem.

        • Michelle ✓classified

          Do you think the way they’ve presented the problem is comprehended by 8 yr olds? Sure seems to me the way they are presenting the material, even if the kids grasp HOW to solve the problem, I don’t see them understanding the purpose of the problem. And that’s part of what’s wrong with education today – they teach kids how to solve math problems, but the real knowledge comes from understanding WHY. I know lots of kids who can solve a math problem, but can’t tell you how to apply the logic…because they aren’t taught the logic behind the math.

          • Sv3

            The problem is actually showing the student the logic and answers the “why.”

            Why is 26 +17 = 43?

            Because there are two 10s and a 6 in 26 and one 10 and a 7 in 17. You add all 10s together you get 30, then add 6 and 7 you get 13. Add them altogether, you get 43.

            The problem posted is actually explaining the logic in the numbers. By grouping it by 10s, like how someone in real world would count dollar bills, it is both logical and practical.

        • Super Heroes

          How about we teach students to master the single digit addition/subtraction/multiplication/division first? Common Core doesn’t focus on memorizing basic,single digit equations.

          • Sv3

            Because memorizing is a failed method that we’ve been using in years. If we concentrate on teaching kids to learn the logic, it doesn’t really matter what number pair they remember.

            If they understand that multiplication is actually counting in groups, they can multiply anything.

          • alanstorm

            Not buying your BS.

            “Because memorizing is a failed method…” Prove it, or at least provide evidence.

            Memorization is absolutely essential. It’s programming in the basic data that one will need in order to calculate anything.

            If no memorization is required, how are they to know that 6 + 4 = 10? Counting on their fingers?

          • Sv3

            Taking what I posted out of context is not a good way to start a discussion. But to answer your question, 10 is also (3+3) + (2+2) or (3*2) + (2*2) or 9 + 1 or 20/2, not only 6 +4.

            You see, knowing the logic trumps any ability to memorize the equation.

            By memorizing 6 + 4 = 10, you are reserving part of your memory in that limited application. If you can understand how 10 comes to be, either by adding, subtracting, multiplying, or dividing, you are opening your understanding to the higher level of calculations.

            6 + 4 = 10, means little to Algebra, for example.

            If the problem is x + x = 10, surely your won’t answer with 6 + 4.

          • fili

            You couldn’t have posted any of your equational examples without “memorizing” either….so stating it’s failed is going a little far, isn’t it?

  • AmericanLass

    Has anyone done a study, to determine how such illogical math, affects the brains of someone so young ?

    • QWYS (Hydralisk of the Swarm)

      turns them into democrats or inmates. Not really much of a difference, I know.

  • marcellucci

    Is there a purpose for obsessing over the number 10 to the point of confusion?
    Is this metric based math…..?

  • http://www.harlemghost.blogspot.com/ HarlemGhost

    we are doomed if this the standard way of teaching math …

  • moonsbreath

    The answer to the above problems = POCKET CALCULATOR.

    • Guest

      And that is the crux of the problem in a nutshell.

    • QWYS (Hydralisk of the Swarm)


  • illannoy

    Common Core: It’s Four the Children

  • David Cutler

    I can see what they were trying to do, but they did it badly. And before you can do the process they were TRYING to do, you need to already know the basics. This isn’t teaching the basics.
    Adding 4 to 26 gives a round number of 30 making it easier to add to 17, which gives 47. Now subtract the EXTRA 4 you that you added in in the first place, which now gives the correct answer of 43. What they did was added the 4 to get 30 and subtracted 4 from 17 all at the beginning, just making it a muddled mess.
    Like I said, you have to know the basics first before you can manipulate the numbers like this.

  • Gabe Jones

    Trying to simplify the simplest things only makes it more complicated.

  • John Rebori

    Where is Tom Lehrer when we need him?

  • David Gillies

    There is actually a good and pedagogically-useful technique hidden in among all the persiflage. This is exactly how I would mentally calculate, say, 837 – 163: first subtract 37 from 63 to get 26, then subtract 126 from 800 to get 674. But note this is mental arithmetic. With pen and paper I would do it the standard way, by columns. If you play with numbers then there are all sorts of useful tricks – for example knowing the squares of small numbers allows you to multiply, say, 83 and 67 in a trice: (83 + 67)/2 = 75 and (83 – 67)/2 = 8 so 83 × 67 = 75² – 8² = 5625 – 64 = 5561. (x + 1/2)² = x² + x + 1/4 so 75² = 100(49 + 7 + .25), and so on. But these are things that require deep familiarity with small numbers, a little bit of algebra and practice, practice, practice. This Common Core nonsense is hiding the actual technique behind a layer of useless obfuscation.

  • effinayright

    I failed to get the correct answers when I tried these problems, because I forgot to take the secant of the mantissa.

  • Chris Leaver

    Both of these problems make sense to me. The problem is that each method is more complex than they need to be.

    The first problem the answer is C. They are teaching to break things down into smaller chunks. This completely subverts the principle of learning your math tables so that you gain instant recall. Instead, you have to do it on paper. Granted, this method is good for large numbers. But they are not doing large numbers. They are doing simple numbers which should be memorized as the good old addition and multiplication tables.

    The second problem is simply astounding in it’s complexity. Instead of teaching children to be able to do the math in their heads, it’s teaching them to have to do it on paper. This also subverts the math tables we all had to memorize as children.

    Bottom line is that these methods of doing math are crap. Yes, in most higher math it is good to learn the hard way before learning the shortcuts. But again, this is NOT higher math. This is basic math and living as a responsible adult requires everyone to have a good grasp of basic math. Clearly Common Core doesn’t feel that children need to become responsible adults. Funny how I am not surprised!

  • BoltUp

    How on earth did we get to this point, where educators assume all children are imbeciles? I can actually understand doing things like the above, but only for divergent thinkers. We don’t all learn the same, but for the most part, most kids understand that, at the root, counting up from 26 by 17 gives 43. But to clutter education with this stuff as the new normal just creates more confusion. In the past, we didn’t have these methods, yet people from the past built skyscrapers, rockets, planes, etc. Standard, old-fashioned math STILL WORKS!

  • DocScience

    Pretty obvious this entire section of “math” was designed by calculator manufacturers.

  • Detective Sam Milos™

    I have a MS in engineering. This crap looks like it was designed by Charles Manson.

    • HWarrior13

      Thank you…I thought it was just me ! lol

  • radicallyalyssa

    I guess this shit is less complicated than addition? Why are they trying to make children do math in their heads?

    My father’s and boyfriend’s minds work this way. They’re both horrible at math, but they can do this type of stuff in their heads, and the same goes for multiplication. I have to have a pen and paper, but I am also able to go Algebra 2 and Calculus* problems. These Common Core problems are making things twice as difficult in twice the time.

    I miss how easy it was to be a kid when I was in elementary school.

    *Well, I could in high school, anyway!

  • Jarhead Ed

    What tom-foolery is this?

  • William556

    That second problem bears a resemblance to rapid math programs, you the ones you see advertized that say you can learn to do big math problems in your head. However, to do those you have to have a fundamental understanding of math. This is NOT a good way to teach math.

  • RedRaider2007

    As a general rule, I hate common core. My husband was a dual major in math and chemistry in undergrad (and he got a 4.0 and honors), and I was an accounting major. I tutored math classes from remedial up through Cal I. Needless to say, he and I are on the same page about our feelings on common core, espcially when it comes to math. Five-ish years from now when we have kids, we plan to homeschool.

    That said, i understand what they are trying to accomplish here. They are just executing it very poorly.

    I don’t know about y’all, but if I am trying to work any type of arithmetic in my head, I always break the numbers into pieces, and my pieces are usually based on a multiple of ten. Instead of adding ones and carrying anything left over to the tens place, as I would if I were adding the numbers on paper, I add the tens together, then I add the ones together, and then I add the results of both together. (For example, for the problem above (26 + 17), I would have said 20 + 10 = 30, 6 + 7 = 13, and 30 + 13 = 43.)

    My husband works problems in his head an entirely different way, but we generally come to the answer in the same amount of time.

    I think a more effective approach for what they were trying to accomplish is to tell kids different ways they can do problems in their heads, giving them three or four different options as well as the option to come up with their own method. They could have them work regular problems (that are not multiple choice) and have them write out the way they thought was most helpful to them as their answer.

    Some kids will be confused by problems that have been broken down that way, some kids will love it, and some kids will say “that works, but I like this other way better.” Whether or not the common core method for adding multidigit numbers works will really depend on each child.

    Also, I think a lesson in breaking down problems to make them easier to solve in your head is not something that should be graded. Whether they can work the problem correctly and understand it is what matters, not how they accomplish it.

    Common core is just taking away an old method that is well done and replacing it with one that may help or may confuse, depending on the kid. All possible methods should be taught, letting the kid use whichever one makes the most sense to him/her, and the kids should never be forced to use a particular method over another one.

    When I was tutoring in math, every person had a different way of thinking about things, and if there was ever more than one method, I showed them both/all and let the kid pick which one he/she wanted to use. Every single one of my students started with C’s to F’s and finished with A’s or B’s in their classes, so I think I know what I am talking about here. (Well, there was one exception, but he was homeschooled, and his mother didn’t make him take math classes. I had to teach him how to add and subtract negative numbers, but he wouldn’t do any practice problems at home. So, I had to re-teach him the same thing every week. He failed because of a lack of effort, not because he wasn’t smart enough to understand. He is the only outlier in my stats.)

    • lady22

      I do too! I have always loved math. Growing up I would always make a 10 and add the remainder. But yes I agree they are explaining it in a very confusing way.

  • Joe W.

    What’s wrong with “Readin’, writin’ & ‘rithmatic”??? Seems to me that the basic 3 “R”s were pretty successful for a couple hundred years in our country. Am I the only one who notices that today’s high school graduates are functionally illiterate and cannot even count back change??

    • therantinggeek

      Nope, I’ve seen that happen on many occasions. Counting back change is a dying art, I’m afraid…

  • Male Factor

    …and you thought Leftists fu**ed up out Schools before!

    There is no way to come out of lessons like those knowing how to do math!

  • Judy Reinhardt

    Even when I retired 8 years ago, when we began learning multiplication we began with the 7 tables. The reasoning you ask? There are 7 days in a week so students are already familiar with groups of 7. All that memorization stuff, not FUN for the kids.

  • lady22

    The second one is how I add. I always made ten when I was adding numbers when I was growing up. I didn’t go through all those steps but I simply would make a 10 and add the remainder to the number. Especially when adding 9’s (take 1 from the number you are adding) and 8’s (take 2 from the number you are adding). But saying that I still H-A-T-E common core math.

  • http://Twitter.com/jkerrysforehead John Kerry’s Forehead

    I am sooooooooo happy I started homeschooling my 6th grader this year and her school is not supporting Common Core..

  • LinTaylor ✓vitrified

    Yes, because surely this will make it easier for kids to do math. /sarc

  • chewinmule

    Most everyone can be trained. Only a small percentage of people can be educated.

  • wearefree

    I am planning to return to college in the Spring to work on a History degree, so I picked up a couple of math refresher books at the bookstore, one of which claims it is “aligned with Common Core.” It has been around 30 years since I got my Associate’s Degree, so it’s been awhile since I learned math. All I can say is, good grief. The way math is taught these days is a joke. I feel so sorry for kids who are just learning.

  • Guest

    Good God! What convoluted thinking is this? Happily my state governor just rejected Common Core. My Grandsons are Math whizzes, like their Mom, and do fine with the curriculum so far and their elementary school has employed common core reasoning. But heck, they are little geniuses. What about the average child….and grandmama?

  • Murray

    That’s it… Now, even mathematics are subject to redefinition. Because it makes us feel better 1+1 can equal anything we can imagine.
    BTW – with heavy sarc.

    • LJ

      not to be a stickler but 1 + 1 can be different things…. it depends what your base is. :)

      • Dexter Alarius

        There are 10 kinds of people in the world:
        Those that understand binary,
        and those that don’t.

        • http://www.black-and-right.com/ IceColdTroll

          No, there are 2 kinds of people in the world.
          The kind that can extrapolate from incompletete data.

  • LJ

    this i my take. substitution and factorization are paramount to higher mathematics. I think too many kids think you have to memorize everything in math like you do other disciplines and that is a daunting feeling. If they learn from the start you can break things up into pieces they do know it not only eases that fear but helps later in math. I agree its not your basic table arithmetic but has that been working very well lately. and I am in no way an apologist for common core but integrating algebraic principles to arithmetic is not a crazy idea in my opinion

    • http://www.black-and-right.com/ IceColdTroll

      I think I get what you’re saying. But I confess, I was always lousy at math, so maybe I don’t know whereof I speak. But I’ll say this much, what this is doing seems a lot like reinventing the wheel with every problem. Why not just memorize your multiplication/addition etc. tables? Isn’t that ultimately easier than factoring out 7 X 6 or 15-7 when you see those equations?

      • LJ

        I see it as a rigid way to learn and to an extent boring.. to me math isnt about learning how to add, its learning how to think. being told “1+1 is 2 memorize it” is no different than “George Washington was the first president Memorize it” what if I told you 1 + 1 = ((64x + 82yz^2) / (64x + 82yz^2)) + ((64x + 82yz^2 ) / (64x + 82yz^2)).. if you had only been exposed to tables you would look at that and say… ” I was always lousy at math” if you had learned from the start substitution it may not look so daunting.

        • http://www.black-and-right.com/ IceColdTroll

          But you DO memorize that George Washington was the first president. You don’t research original archives of the Costitutional Convention and connect dots anew which have been connected for more than 200 years. I do get what you’re saying, I think, and I agree that memorizing tables is dull, but it also seems to me that that is the basic building block you have to start from. 2 + 2 = 4 may be dull, but it doesn’t get much simpler or easier to understand: you can look at it on your fingers or beans on your desk and actually see it — and how much simpler can it be?

          • LJ

            your kind of proving my point. 2 + 2 = 10 in the quaternary numeral system. 2 + 2 = 11 in the ternary numeral system, on and on

            but thats secondary to substitution applications like I mentioned above. being able to see you can substitute like values and in fact entire equations helps you think through things which becomes invaluable when you are missing variables.

          • John Thomas “Jack” Ward III

            Or, use your “Human Calculator”-Your fingers and toes! God knows how many times I’ve used them..Jawamax 8<{D}

  • right_on

    If the expectation is to get these young brains totally confused to the point that some “overseer” must make decisions for them, I’m beginning to see how that works. Scary times ahead if parents don’t stay on top of this, and get it YANKED out the public eduction system, and destroyed.

  • The Masked Avatar


  • kay1968

    My daughter’s homework recently spelled the number 40, fourty. The teacher was not to pleased when I pointed it out to her.

  • schveiguy

    You know what’s even DUMBER about that first problem? None of the “incorrect” answers result in the correct value for 15 – 7. So a child could say “hm.. I know what 15 – 7 is, it’s 8. I’ll choose C because 8 is the answer” without having ANY idea what the “subtraction sentence” means.

    It’s also (I guess) a very nice feature, because those kids who actually know how to do math can ignore common core and just pick the correct answer.

    Holy crap, it’s like we’ve added bureaucracy to 3rd grade! Cut through the red tape, and get to the answer 8!

    Homeschooling is looking more and more like one of the best decisions I’ve ever made.

    • Stephen L. Hall #NonquamTrump

      Teach children to guess at the answer, kind of like the new spelling.

  • SpaceRacer423

    was the answer “C?”
    I think its “C.”
    Its the only one with an 8 in it.
    Obama was right.
    Third grade math IS hard.

  • http://www.black-and-right.com/ IceColdTroll

    Jeebus effin xmas, I don’t understand the top one at all. The second one, I’ll do that kind of thing as a mental shortcut, but that’s all it is, a shortcut.

    And when did “equation” become a “number sentence”? Now THAT sounds really retarded sir, and I mean that quite literally, not as an offensive crack.

  • Clark Goodrich

    I completely agree that “regular” math is just fine and that this is really weak if it is being taught as the new way to do math, BUT… I do understand what’s happening here, I don’t believe it is quite as convoluted as these examples make it look, and I think a lot of us follow this method now and then. They are just explaining it very poorly here. Let me try:

    “Our problem is 26 + 17. To avoid ‘carrying the 1,” try to get your first number up to something that can be divided by 10. 30 is close, so let’s go with that. What do we add to 26 to get to 30? 4. That’s correct. So, we pull that 4 from the 17, and now our problem is 30 + 13.”

    “Our problem is 15 – 7. To avoid “[whatever they used to call the process of crossing out the 1–sorry, it’s been a long time]”, let’s bring the 15 down to 10. What do we subtract from 15 to get to 10? 5. That’s correct. So, we pull that 5 from the 7, and now our problem is 10 – 2.”

    That’s all this is. Not a big deal. I do it all the time when figuring tips, but I don’t think about this way, I just do it.

    The benefit, as you can see, is that it’s a lot (well, marginally) faster to add 30 + 13 than 26 + 17, or to subtract 2 from 10 than 7 from 15. Of course it could be argued that any time saved is sacrificed in the time it takes to make the calculation before the calculation. And here proponents would be right to interject: but they’re final answers will be correct A LOT MORE OFTEN.

    The drawback is that they at least seem to be teaching our children to think in terms of shortcuts. Yet, didn’t they start that when they allowed us to use calculators?

    There is something to be said for grinding it out, but after you really do know how to do it, is there any reason not to let technology (or in this case, a new idea) make us faster and more accurate?

    • John Thomas “Jack” Ward III

      That’s a round-about way of teaching math, I grew up with the old standardized method of doing math, and I turned out fine! Jawamax 8<{D}

      • Clark Goodrich

        It is a different way, yes.

  • Bryn Watkins

    How is this any easier than the traditional way of 6+7=13, which is 3 carry 10, 20+10+10=40, answer = 43?

  • SpaceRacer423

    Both my parents are teachers, and my little sister is an elementary math teacher in a school with “Common Core.”
    Math isn’t my sisters strong suit, that’s biology and Physical Education, and she struggled with it as a kid. However she studied hard and passed the state exam in Math, Science, and PE. She actually has a FAR BETTER grasp/enjoyment of math AFTER learning Common Core math than she ever did in school.
    This process DOES HELP some kids.
    HOWEVER, it is NOT for everyone.
    Results still vary greatly depending on: the quality of the teacher, involvement of the parents, and if we’re honest, the student’s home life.
    Common Core makes this more difficult because parents don’t understand it.
    This means they cant help their kids with their homework and are blocked out of much needed parental involvement.
    Matters are made much worse if the teacher refuses to provide a time to meet with the parents and explain the process so parents can reinforce the lesson at home.
    When the parent and teacher are in conflict with their teaching methods it undermines the authority of both, with the majority of the damage being do to the parent. After all the teacher is at school and it supposed to know what they are talking about.
    To sum up. Common Core isn’t the issue, at least not here.
    Its teacher quality and parental involvement.
    Common Core provides an excuse for poor teaches to cut out parents,
    but they’d be poor teachers no matter what.

    • schveiguy

      No, you struck at the issue inadvertently. Common core isn’t for everyone. But it’s being *forced* on everyone. Common core IS the problem, because the very point of common core is that everyone learns the same thing. If it were not the problem, it would be called Core Choice.

      It’s no longer as important to know that 15 – 7 = 8. It’s more important to use the government-approved method to get 8.

      We have standardized exams in MA for a few years (MCAS). It’s doing horribly. Not everyone learns the same. Common core will be no better.

      • SpaceRacer423

        One size fits all education isn’t a good idea no matter what label you put on it.
        Hence the reason I said it isn’t for everyone.
        I personally want to see the entire Dept of Education dissolved and have the tax money returned to state’s who would then set up voucher programs.
        However there does need to be some standardized testing so that parents have something by which to judge a school’s performance.
        (the test should just say “13 – 7= __ ” and allow kids to get the answer any way they choose)

        • schveiguy

          Standardized testing is still not good enough. In MA, teachers teach to the test, and not to teach the students. The teachers hate it. The kids don’t learn what they should.

          I think we’re in agreement, but I think we should be careful as to what we accept as valid, and what we allow as an ‘objective judge’. Kids not only learn in different ways, they learn at different *paces*.

          We have been told forever that the way kids learn is how teachers teach these days, but nobody has ever done ANY verification of this. It was just decided near the turn of the 19th, and it’s now just accepted as ‘the way it is’. But homeschooling and various alternative learning systems have shown that kids CAN learn in different ways, and often learn BETTER, depending on the kids. Kids need to learn the way they do, and it’s nearly impossible to FORCE a kid to learn something. You’re much better off in some cases just letting them learn that when they are ready.

          A good anecdote I’ve heard from a homeschooler is how her son didn’t know how to do more than basic addition/subtraction, and was high school aged. But he all of a sudden was very interested in physics. She hired a tutor, and in about 3 months, he was caught up, and even excelled in math. From personal experience, I know that when there is something I am focused on learning, nothing can stop me. When you I am not interested at all, nothing can teach me. That’s just the way it is with some kids.

          • SpaceRacer423

            I whole heartedly agree that students learn differently.
            I also believe that standardized testing is a necessary part of a voucher program, especially during the first few years of the program as it is the only tool by which parents can judge a school.
            After a few years schools will have test history and reputations on which to stand. At that point the free market takes over and parents pick their schools the same way the pick colleges or restaurants. By reputation and reviews.

    • Judy Perry

      The bigger question is if this mode of instruction is beneficial to THIRD GRADE STUDENTS. The fact that somebody knows somebody else who studied this stuff for an advanced degree is entirely irrelevant, as are the observation that other grown adults just think this way naturally. I’m betting they didn’t in the third grade.

      • SpaceRacer423

        My sister didn’t learn common core in the third grade,
        she learned it as an adult.
        It doesn’t seem “natural” to me either, but neither did “canning” which was the method I was taught as a kid.
        The point is don’t get mad at the teaching method just because it doesn’t make sense to you. Get mad at the teacher when he/she refuses to explain it you and cuts you out of your child’s education.
        The same thing happened to my mom 20 years ago when my 4th grade math teacher refused to explain “canning” to her. That was two decades before anyone thought to bring “Common Core” into Arkansas.

      • Tuaca1107

        They haven’t tested any of this so no one knows.

  • Matt

    I don’t see the issues with this. It’s C.

    • jim

      I also see no problem, its the way I do it in my head. Break down by 10;s.

  • James McEnanly

    I think the idea is to confuse the parents as much at it is to teach the students. It also seems to make a simple arithmetic problem as complex as filing out a 1040 with Roman numerals

  • Joe

    Too hard for small minds. Just add 20 to 10 and add 6 to 7 and combine the answers.

    • Sv3

      But the current math convention of adding is that you have to add from the right to left, starting with the 1s digit (that is 6 + 7), then carry over the 1 to the 10s-digit (because 6+7=13, so you leave the 3 in the 1s-digit), then add the tens-digit to get the answer. That’s what they are currently teaching the “small minds.”

      • Joe

        Well, i was never a good student in math until I learned to be a cabinetmaker and had to put all that math to use and then it came easy. Geometry was even easy when it had to be applied to my work.

        When I was young they didn;t teach us any particular way to do it just as long as we did it and it was right.

  • Mack Bonham

    I’m a financial advisor. I work all day with statistics, projections, present and future value of money etc. etc. And I have NO IDEA what the hell that question is asking for.

    • Sv3

      Have you round numbers up to the nearest 10 with decimals?

      It’s the same concept without the decimal point.

      To round 0.6 to 1.0 you need 0.4; to make 6 to a 10 you need 4. :/

      • Mack Bonham

        I know how to round numbers, the nuns taught me that in second grade. That problem isn’t asking you to round numbers. It’s not actually asking anything in any language that makes sense to me.

        And given that I can do math and the teenagers in McDonalds can’t make change unless the register tells them how I’m going to go out on a limb and assert that my education was vastly superior. Why tamper with a system that worked? A cynic might suggest that churning out a generation of mathematical illiterates was considered a feature rather than a bug by advocates of this curriculum.

        • Sv3

          I’m not really sure which problem you’re talking about but they both make sense to me.

          For example, the Number Sense problem’s answer is C.

          If that doesn’t make sense to you, then I don’t know what to say.

          The conflict here is that one side says that Common Core is “dumbed down” yet the reply here says that it’s too hard to understand? Which is it?

          In my opinion, it “is” dumbed down and they could have done better in explaining. What I don’t understand is that people here claims to work with numbers as professionals and they don’t understand it? That’s just sad in its own way.

  • TheInternetStupiditySlayer

    I do math like this in my head. Because I’m terrible at doing math. Now it’s like we’re assuming kids are terrible at math instead of trying to teach them the right way.

    • LJ

      your assuming because you dont have everything memorized your “terrible at doing math” and in reality you are doing a more complicated math. I see it as the exact opposite. I think we have too low of assumptions of kids. I want them to think not be told answers. thinking through a problem is the key not memorization

  • derfelcadarn

    In college I once took a math class involving imaginary numbers, seeing as the volume of real numbers is infinite why would there be a need for imaginary ones? This makes the imaginary number thing actually appear intelligent.

    • SpaceRacer423

      when you multiply a negative by a negative you get a positive.
      Imaginary numbers are needed to perform an end run around this rule and get the square root of negative numbers.
      the square root of -1 = i.

    • Markward

      The fun part is the imaginary numbers are used in engineering!

      • SpaceRacer423

        Im not an engineer.
        The furthest I made it in math was Finite Mathematics in college.
        (one class beyond the required College Algebra)
        Your reply scares the crap outa me.
        I hope I don’t drive over an imaginary bridge on the way home tonight.

        • Markward

          I’m in electronics engineering, we deal with volts, amps, and Ohms, and some of the math that goes into it uses imaginary numbers as kinda like a vector of sorts.

          • SpaceRacer423

            ahh, so some things youre using fall into a ( – , – ) quadrant on a ( x, y) axis?
            am I close?

          • Markward

            phase shifts are one area where they creep up in.

        • John Thomas “Jack” Ward III

          Up until Algebra, I was really good at math… Jawamax 8<{D}

          • SpaceRacer423

            that’s probably because Algebra is the point where math switches from a linier process to a dynamic one.
            Basic math is giving you tools.
            Algebra is deciding how to combine the tools to solve the problem.
            In others words its a lot easier to learn to drive a nail than it is to build a bookshelf.
            no offense.
            not everyone’s brain is wired for it,
            and perhaps a different teacher with a different approach would benefit you.

          • John Thomas “Jack” Ward III

            None taken… BUt I’m excellent at fractions and decimals… Jawamax 8<{D}

          • LJ

            this is why I think we should integrate algebraic ideas to basic arithmetic as this seems to be doing. It seems to me for the first few years its “go to English memorize spelling, go to social studies memorize dates, go to math memorize tables.” why not change one to “go to math learn to think” while I agree people are wired differently but I think most people have a wrong perception of what math is. perfect example is of all the people here who say they do this kind of figuring in their heads but they are “terrible at math” when in fact they are doing a more complex form and in reality actual math and not just regurgitation

  • Jeff Haynes

    or, you could just add 26 and 17.

    • John Thomas “Jack” Ward III


  • Press Watchusa

    I got it right away
    What’s wrong with you all?
    Please pass me that BONG again!

    • Sv3

      I was wondering the same thing.

    • Tom

      I certainly understand what they are doing, but is it really the best way to proceed with this problem? Why not add 6 and 7 to get 13, carry a ten over, add 10 and 20 and the other 10, to obtain 40 and 3 (or 43). This is called the standard algorithm and it has value in EVERY multi-digit addition problem.

      Here 3rd graders need to understand what to pair with 6 to obtain 10 (of course, 4), then how to decompose 17 with a 4 (13+4), then add the 4 to the 26 (of course, 30), and finally add the 13 to the 30 (and we are at 43). That is really not a particularly nice way to think about this problem.

      As I said elsewhere on this thread, if you want to go nonstandard, then take 26, add 20, and subtract 3. Is that not a better way to look at this?

    • John Thomas “Jack” Ward III

      It’s 4:20 somewhere… Toke, toke (Cough! GAG! Cough!) XD Jawamax 8<{D}

  • Tom

    Use the ‘standard’ algorithm for two-digit addition. There is a reason it is standard, especially in third grade. If you are going to use something non-standard, then take 26+20-3=43. This certainly a better way to add 17 to 26 than decomposing 17 as 13+4.

  • Markward

    The hell happen to Adding the numbers in the ones column, then carry over to the tens column and add?

    • John Thomas “Jack” Ward III

      It makes math “Too Easy” for the Libturds. lol Jawamax 8<{D}

  • chris hasty

    i can see how breaking it into tens is a good way to understand it, but the whole 17-4 thing just makes it more complicated than it needs to be. if they just stated: 26 into 20 and 17 into 10 20 +10=30 6+7=13 30+13=43, then i could see that working. the 17-4 thing and the 26+4 thing just complicates it. i can see how breaking into small #’s helps children understand the relationships of big #’s, but this goes beyond simple.

    • Sv3

      If teachers are going to explain it to kids, teachers often use visual aids. If for example they are using marbles (or dollar bills), you need to take the 4 from 17, so showing it visually, you take the 4 marbles from the group of marble with 17 then add it to the group with 26 to make 30.

      • TDS

        So in order to do the simplest of math problems, kids will have to carry around pockets full of marbles?

        • Sv3

          lol. Of course not. It’s for visual aid.

          Some kids are realist, they have to see it to believe it. It’s how they understand the concept.

        • SpaceRacer423

          It seems overcomplicated to you because you already know the answer.
          However to a kid who doesn’t know the answer, this is a repeatable method of finding the answer.
          They hopefully will retain the method and apply it to more complicated problems.

          • TDS

            And then the method becomes even more complicated than it needs to be.
            I can see this as acceptable if it is just a minor PART of the way they help kids learn math, but if this is the ONLY way that they will accept, or if they demand that kids understand this over other methods that they may find easier, it’s utterly moronic.

          • SpaceRacer423

            no, it becomes simpler.
            Four, five, six digit numbers become just as easy to digest as two digit numbers.
            Its just a tool.
            I don’t understand why so many people are upset with a technique.

          • TDS

            Sorry, but I cannot see how it is that you think that this method of putting subtraction into an addition problem and making the student do several extra steps to get the answer is the definition of “simplification”.
            But please, enlighten us all on how this way of doing math could possibly make adding six digit numbers so much easier than simply adding the ones, then the tens, then the hundreds, etc…
            Use this example, if you would be so kind, and show us all how you use this method to get your answer:
            65,763 + 27,389 = ?
            I’ll do it the “old skool” way in 6 steps:
            3+9=12 (carry the 1)
            6+8+(1)=15 (carry the 1)
            7+3+(1)=11 (carry the 1)
            5+7+(1)=13 (carry the 1)
            Giving me 93,152 in six simple steps.
            Your turn…

  • Terry

    Wait til you see their insane division. I tried to help my kid, couldn’t understand it myself (college grad in sciences) They put him in sped-ed math. In my opinion, they put the wrong person in sped-ed…. (I put him in private school and he’s doing fine now)

  • TDS

    You could just do an easier way, and in fewer steps…


    Or simply go “old skool” on it:


  • TDS

    Of course, most of these third graders probably already have cell phones with calculators on them.
    (Pointing out the irony of when my 8th grade math teacher asked “What are the chances you will walk around all day with a calculator in your pocket?” as the reason why they weren’t allowed in class…)

  • John Thomas “Jack” Ward III

    They should DROP this $#!+ Math and just show “Schoolhouse Rock!” Jawamax 8<{D}

    • MaMa1

      3 is the magic number.

      • MrApple

        My Hero Zero!

        • QWYS (Hydralisk of the Swarm)

          Hey little 12 toes…

    • http://commentspammersmustdie.blogspot.com/ Kakarot

      Or maybe “Rock & Roll High School”.

  • cr2thfairy

    I got it, but the question is why? Some prelim lessons are needed here to understand this cluster%#*k assignment.

    • cr2thfairy

      3rd grade?!?!?!?

  • theBuckWheat

    Common Dysfunction will cost a lifetime of diminished academic and on the job performance. This will translate in to lower life-time earnings potential and hundreds of billions in lower GDP.

    • TDS

      But the Democraps get an even LOWER information population, which is what they need to keep their power…
      That IS the desired outcome, after all…

      • Sv3

        If that’s the case, then the Dems future is bleak — and I doubt that’s the desired outcome

        • AlCashier

          dems want an enslaved population, completely submissive to the democrat party govt which will no longer be called ‘democrat’ as the cockroach socialist party steps into the light.
          unless the sociopath obama is stopped cold, America will be no longer be a Republic– which is why obama NEVER calls it a Republic, he calls it a ‘democracy’: which is basically “mob rule”. if obama/dems can get enough enslaved to the Govt “taking care of them”..as we saw in 2012.. = the mob rules

          their socialist godhead obamacare is about the “Complete Lives System”. under age 14 are ‘useless eaters’, and if the child is sick = “let them die!” (Harry Reid just slipped up & revealed exactly that) …. ages 15-45 are the worker drones. over age 46= obsolete, the IPAB will decree: DIE asap, no healthcare.

          • Sv3

            So it’s really about the socialist in the democratic party and not about the democrats per se. With that, I agree with you.

          • TDS

            I, for one, have trouble telling the difference anymore. At least when it comes to those with (D) next to their name at National as well as many State levels of office.
            I agree that there may be many minor low-level politicians who are NOT part of this new breed of “Democrat/Socialist” monstrosity.
            And I also agree that there is a good probability that most of the voters that consider themselves to be Democrats are NOT really Socialists at heart. But I am sorry to say that THOSE are the people being duped the most, because they are the ones that are empowering this new National Socialism to be spread in their name.

        • TDS

          What’s a better populace for the Democrat’s desired “Utopia” than a bunch of brainless sheeple?

  • Jay Jay

    My father calculated like this. He was a wiz at math and had some of his old text books from the 40’s that taught like this. He tried to teach me how to do it but I have dyscalculia. I’m not good at math any which way people teach it. He would always try to tell me that working with a sum of 10 is far easier. What I think is not good is not the change in format but the tests. These kids are tested right as they come back. A proper amount of time is not given to children to learn it. Teachers are teaching for the test and not anything else. Admins. just what their pay-offs.

    • j p✓ʳᵉᶠʳᶦᵉᵈ

      Teaching to the test? With my kids it was, send them home with a bunch of homework that they don’t know how to do and have the parents teach them. Of course then I had to read the crazy-ass methods they were using because they didn’t want it done the way I knew how to do it. I’ve been in mechanical engineering for over 30 years and it still works for me so far.

      • BronxJo

        In my afterschool program, the kids never understood the math homework and half the time the teacher could not clarify it better herself, and this was pre-common core, in a parochial school. Fortunately, I’d already dealt with that curriculum with my own children, and could explain it to the kids. Now they have improved, er complicated, it even more,

  • Wonder Pony

    Boy, oh boy, does this remind me of “New Math”. I doubt i you are old remember it.
    Did it EVAH mess with me when they stopped it when I was in sixth grade and went back to just “Math”.

    • Wonder Pony

      Please forgive that grammar. Sometimes when I type my keyboard skips letters. “I doubt if most of you are enough to remember (New Math)…

      • BronxJo

        I was subject to many versions of it all through the 70s. Nothing can help if you don’t know the basics, it only confuses them more. My mother, the math genius, used to laugh when I would show her the newest thing, different at each school, as we moved like gypsies for my father’s civilian Navy job.

  • cmerlo1

    I’ll stick to diagramming sentences.

  • indiana_conservative

    This stuff can work as a math trick once you learn the basics but should never be the core of training. I use a similar method while shopping with my wife but I am old school and learned the basics first then figured a method to get the same answer through short cuts.
    Teach these kids the basics then let them run with it. That way every parent can help their child with the homework assignments and teach them the tricks of math at home catered to how well they know their child.

    • LJ

      the way I read this is “we should do it the same way the parents did it because the parents are not capable of doing the more complicated stuff…”

      I dont see that as a positive step. I think we need to teach kids to think differently about what math is which is how to think through situations not just memorizing tables. the “tricks” are the actual math not the regurgitation of a table.

      • indiana_conservative

        Our parents must have done something right because 30 years ago our country was the in the upper percentile in education across the board world wide in high school. Now we are in the lowest percentile in the world. Most everything of that time were put to pen and paper with a lot of critical thinking. Today they whip out their calculators and get on a computer for the answers they seek.

        No I think technology is great, my God our generation invented the foundations that has been built on today, but lets get back to basics and bring us back into the leaders of education in the world. China is more advanced than us and use a device that is thousands of years old called a abacus. Just history as I see it.

        • LJ

          how can you assume that using the same system of learning from 30 years ago will automatically put the US back in the position it was in education 30 years ago. is it not a possibility the other countries have found a better way. (I dont know if this is the case but just an observation) the kids I taught algebra to almost to a T if they had problems would get frustrated because the couldnt “remember” basic arithmetic. If you teach kids to think through things when they are stuck instead of just saying “well you need to remember” is a better model in my opinion. and I think the earlier you get them to think differently about what math is the less they will fall back into the “I have to memorize math” when in reality that couldnt be further from the truth

          • fili

            I’ve been out of school for decades, and I have NO problem remembering all the “basic math” tables I learned in grade school – and I’m thankful that I learned them! If I had a child now, there’s no doubt in my mind, he or she would be home-schooled – I wouldn’t let that malleable brain be touched by what is laughingly called the current “educational” system.

          • LJ

            these are two questions or examples in an entire curriculum. first off do you know if they dont teach tables anymore. (I dont) but I do know the processes they are trying to get across are extremely valuable in Math and in my opinion need to be introduced as early as possible because math isnt about just memorizing. Its about learning to think through problems in every way possible because there is not always one way to do things. in higher mathematics you will be given problems that look exactly the same and you have to figure out the process to work them. sometimes it actually comes down to trial and error. there is no way to even know which process is right. its frustrating and extremely complicated. the faster you understand the tenants of each process the easier it will be to recognize how and when to apply them.

          • indiana_conservative

            If you like tricky math than simplify and make it easier not the crap common core teaches.




          • LJ

            you keep using “trick” but its not; its a fundamental mathematical principle that is invaluable. changing one variable into something you can work with then pulling that back out. secondly what you did is actually the exact same thing but with more steps.

            the actual process for yours is
            26-6= 20
            17-7 = 10
            6+7 = 13
            20+10+13 = 43

            there process is
            26+4 = 30
            17 – 4 = 13
            30 + 13 = 43

  • LuCha

    Working all these crazy shifts to pay for a private school. WORTH. EVERY. PENNY.

    • AlCashier

      GOD bless you AND your lucky family

    • AlCashier

      Homeschooling also works excellently IF you CAN do it. (we understand some folks just cannot.)

  • carolina mama

    Please, tell me we have some Conservative IT people somewhere who are, as we speak, coming up with software that our children can use to help them overcome Common Core!

    • JR48

      No, it’s called sitting with your kids and showing them how to do it old school. That’s how mine survived elementary school math ridiculousness.

  • Sue

    That is the most convoluted way of doing math I have ever seen, Math is basically common sense calculations that are expanded as your grade level increases, Common core is stupid

  • Level999

    More morons running things.

  • JR48

    Better that kids use their fingers to count on, as opposed to this squeeze.

  • interestedobserver2

    Jesus — it’s like they are trying purposely to destroy math and sciences. I guess if you can get rid of fact-based thinking, the only thing left would be “feelings.”

  • Joe Bierek

    You’re kidding, right???

  • Emily B

    My friend is a math teacher and recently told me that this common core curriculum is the best curriculum she’s ever used. I’m going to have her head examined.

    • AlCashier

      we all know who she voted for. twice.

      • Emily B

        Actually, she didn’t. But she is rather a low-information voter, despite having voted for the Republican.

    • in_awe

      “Stanford Prof. James Milgram, the only mathematician on the Common
      Core Validation Committee, refused to sign off on the math standards,
      calling the whole thing “in large measure a political document” during
      testimony he gave in May 2011 in which he advocated for Texas not to
      adopt the Common Core standards.

      “I had considerable influence on the mathematics standards in the
      document. However, as is often the case, there was input from many other
      sources — including State Departments of Education — that had to be
      incorporated into the standards,” he said during the testimony.

      “A number of these sources were mainly focused on things like making
      the standards as non-challenging as possible. Others were focused on
      making sure their favorite topics were present, and handled in the way
      they liked,” he also said, adding that it led to a number of “extremely
      serious failings” in the Common Core that made it premature for any
      state hoping to improve math scores to implement them and that the Core
      Math standards were designed to reflect very low expectations.”


      “So three times four can now equal 11 so long as a student can effectively explain how they reached that answer.”

      – Glyn Wright, Eagle Forum
      But who do trust? A unionized elementary school teacher whose math skills are maybe 1 year ahead of those of her class, or a Standford mathematics professor?

      • LJ

        CC could very well be a terrible thing but pointing to a question that is supposedly from the curriculum and saying its teaching wrong when infact those “questions” do have basic tenants of mathematics used and can be very beneficial in mathematical development hurts your case of saying its bad. You have to be very careful on the battles you choose when attacking something as large as an entire curriculum because if you chose poorly it turns off some of the people you may need to get on your side.

      • http://wolfmoon1776.wordpress.com/ Wolf Moon

        Thanks for that. This explains a lot. They didn’t leave it to the team that has nominal responsibility. Set up a Potemkin expert to lend his name, but then let a hidden committee or czar control the actual product.

        I see this a lot in some other places where “Obamatization” has occurred. The expert or nominal in-charge has to exert extreme push-back to create semi-workable product. The finished product will only be sane, if there is a point at the end, where the over-controllers take their eyes off the team, and the realists can fix it up before it ships.

        I strongly suspect that Obamacare suffered from the same top-down mentality. This is why I’ve been advocating for a year or two to fix it up under Republican control.

  • AlCashier

    this doesn’t make sense, until you look at the current democrat way to do everything. . they are deliberately designing it to create many MORE steps to CREATE more of a problem. any problem!! it is anything to EXTEND the situation and make it MORE hard –or horrible– for the person in the situation..maybe they will give up! -the objective!

    =CommonCore is about dumbing down the child, making the child completely submissive & passive to the GOVT, and NOT being able to relate to his parents/family. it’s a BRAVE NEW WORLD, acc to CommonCore.

  • $22639970

    So Common Core’s technique involves taking simple concepts and complicating them so they become impenetrable. No wonder kids hate school. I’d burn mine down if I had to deal with this crap.

    • kim

      this is how we insist we are teaching children more, while actually they are learning less. so… 1897 an 8th grade student had an education equivalent to a college student today
      15 years ago, you had to pass a 9th grade proficiency test to graduate, so our 12th graders had a 9th grade education
      5 years ago, our 12th grade students had the equivalent education of a 12 year old from a century ago
      and in 5 years?
      our 12th grade students will have the education of an 8 yr old

  • http://twitter.com/Throckmorton09 Biff Wellington

    All I know is, if you buy something for $1.47 and hand the kid a dollar, two quarters and two pennies, you had better step back before his head explodes…

    • John Howard

      Stay put and there’s a good chance he’ll give you back $1.50 in change.

    • BronxJo

      You have to explain why to them, always, such as I gave you 11.00 for a 6.00 purchase, so give me a 5 back. Half the time it ends in nevermind, especially with small change.

  • Richard Vandiamondsworth

    Finally, liberals’ 2 +2 = 5 is coming true!

  • rhetorical1

    Michelle has written at great length about common core and it’s pitfalls. So few even know about this deliberate dumbing down of our youth. It is all about control and indoctrination to the progressive mind set. Get ready America we are in for a bumpy ride!

  • kim

    better than 1st grade math.
    Tommy has 5 crayons. Billy has 5 crayons. How many crayons do Tommy and Billy have?
    Not 5+5=10 THIS is marked incorrect
    a picture of 5 crayons a + sign a picture of 5 crayons an = sign a picture of 10 crayons

    • in_awe

      Clearly your kid was showing off and hurt the self-esteem of others in the class. Watch out for the “diagnosis” of ADHD by the teacher and the required drug treatment for his affliction.

  • wanda faye allen

    with the Demon DemocRATS there is no Wrong Answer !! thats why they are Idiots !

  • SpaceRacer423

    Why are you guys mad at tools?
    Seriously, you guys sound like libs mad at guns.
    I’m perfectly okay with and support the idea of attacking one size fits all education.
    “no child left behind,” “common core,” both are equally bad approaches.

    However it is important to stress that what you are seeing in the above examples are simple problems being used to teach the use of a powerful tool: “the power of 10”

    These are third grade math questions.

    Simple number counting should’ve already been mastered well before a child reaches this level. The idea is to be able to take complicated 4,5, & 6 digit numbers and whittle them down to 2 digit numbers using the fact that we count on a unit of 10 numbering system to the kid’s advantage.

    However you don’t hand a kid an axe and say “slay the dragon.”
    When you first hand a kid an axe you give him an opponent you know he can handle.
    Once he has the concept, THEN you send him after the dragon.
    Common Core is a mess,
    but using this as an argument against it is the intellectual equivalent of using the DC shooting to call for more gun control.

    • Jace Clark

      It’s not so much as being mad at tools, but the inability of parents to assist their kids. Some parents, definitely grand-parents were taught the oh, so passé rote memorization of basic arithmetic and have a hard time grasping this way of teaching, let alone being able to teach it. Any child with a strong memory being taught this gets frustrated ‘showing his work’- when he already ‘knows’ 15-7 = 8. And this ‘power of ten’ concept is lost on her/him.

      • Chris Chambers

        Don’t pick your kids up in your police uniform. You’ll become the big, scary kid threatening meanie!

        • SpaceRacer423

          Do schools not have “Officer Friendly” anymore?

      • SpaceRacer423


        Its just a tool.

        In the hands of a skilled teacher willing to share the concepts with parents it can dramatically improve a student’s understanding of mathematics.

        In the hands of an unskilled or lazy teacher unwilling to work with parents it can damage not just a kid’s concept of math, but also work to undermine a student’s trust in their parents ability to solve problems.

        In both cases the tool isn’t good or bad, the result is determined by the person using it.

        If your child is learning this method or any method you don’t understand, its important to talk to the teacher and learn the concept so you can reinforce the lessons at home.

        If the teacher isn’t willing to do this then I would encourage you to do everything possible to pull that kid out of class; not because the concept is bad, but because the teacher isn’t acting in the best interest of you or the student.

      • BronxJo

        After the boring old memorized tables are done, then you can introduce such tricks. One example I recall was the 9 thing, how subtracting 9 from a 2 digit number is always 1 more than the 1’s integer. When doing a long column of addition, to make 10s then add the rest, etc. The reason I grasped such was that my parents drilled me on basics first; useful tricks stayed in head, rest long forgotten.

    • Stephen L. Hall #NonquamTrump

      Because I’ve had to reteach too many young people who learned this tripe failing to grasp the underlying concepts of place notation and trying to remember disconnected methods made needlessly complicated like the above examples, but miss the main concepts because the teachers focused on new methodology rather than the basics. Like starting learning the multiplication facts with 7s rather than systematic multiplication tables progressing from 1s to 2s et cetera.

      • SpaceRacer423

        Do you realize the inherent intellectual hypocrisy of saying:
        “Common Core is bad because it forces every student to learn the same way.” and then in the same breath saying: “Every kid should learn math the same way I did!”?

        • Stephen L. Hall #NonquamTrump

          Who said anything silly like that?

          • SpaceRacer423

            did I misread your reply to me,
            because the seems to be what you said?

          • Stephen L. Hall #NonquamTrump

            Apparently you did, I said nothing remotely like that.

          • SpaceRacer423

            I just reread your comment.
            It sounds a lot like “this math is wrong and I had to reteach kids the basics the way I learned it.”
            It isn’t the concept.
            The math is sound.
            If your child’s teacher wasn’t willing to work with you then they had a poor teacher. If you didn’t reach out to the teacher and ask for help understanding the concept yourself and instead fought the lessons and tried to force your child to learn as you did, then that’s on you.
            Of course it could also be that this isn’t a concept your child can grasp. I maintain that there is no “one size fits all approach.” If you’ve worked with the teacher and your kid still isn’t getting it, then looking at other options is defiantly the way to go.
            The system itself works. (the math concept, not common core)
            The above examples appear to be overcomplicated because they are using a 1st grad level problem to teach a 3rd grade concept.
            Just as you suggested, they are starting small, with the 1s and 2s, and then building up to bigger things.

          • Stephen L. Hall #NonquamTrump

            Apparently, you can’t read. I do not teach the way I learned, but I have had to teach them the basics which they missed because of this type of nonsense. By the way, most of the problems people have had with math is their poor English skills which causes them not to comprehend what they read. Additionally, you never read anything I wrote which even implied that “one size fits all” as you keep thoughtlessly repeating.

            You want children to learn math, quit turning them over to education majors who do not understand math, or education majors who do not understand English.

            The above example appears to be overly complicated because they are poorly worded and confusing because of poor English. Mathematics requires a far more precise use of language than used in most English classes. The muddled vague expressions used in the examples does not encourage the abstraction necessary to learn the concepts of associative and commutative properties to which these problems allude.

          • SpaceRacer423

            Ive never been taught any of this method of math,
            but I understood the idea behind the first question.
            I don’t understand the second question. Perhaps its because the construction method they are using for the addition is different than the subtraction, or perhaps these are two entirely different teaching methods.
            Twitchy freely admitted they didn’t know where the first example came from, (poor reporting on their part) and it doesn’t sound like anything my sis, a third grade math teacher, has talked about.
            They might be examples from the same class, but I doubt it.

          • Stephen L. Hall #NonquamTrump

            The problem with those questions is not the problem or the concept, it is the wording of the question. For example, the first question could be: Which combination of equations expresses the idea of 15 – 7?

            Instead of: “Which subtraction sentences show you how to find 15 – 7?

            These equations stand on their own, the question only vaguely implies that they are somehow connected. The sentences do not actually show you how to find 15 – 7 as the question states. It requires a leap that the 5 and 2 are a broken up 7, and does not explain why 10 is an intermediate number which is somehow desirable to interject. We know what they are getting at only because we can already do the problem, but the idea is not clear in the question, especially for a third grader.

          • SpaceRacer423

            I suspect that the concept of 10 is being taught here.
            It doesn’t appear in the question because we are only seeing a small part of one piece of school work.
            All I was ever told on a home work sheet was:
            “find the answer 15 – 7 = ?”
            The page never said: “use the counting method” or “use touch points.”
            That was said by the teacher.

          • Guest

            I suspect the teacher who wrote up the first one doesn’t grasps the concept well enough to explain it.

          • Guest

            I suspect that the educator who wrote up the first one doesn’t even grasps the concept themselves, which is why they cannot clearly express it.

          • The Bean

            Come’on Man, as with every institution it is much more important to have a diverse faculty than to have teachers that understand the basic concepts.

          • BronxJo

            I suspect that the educator who wrote up the first one doesn’t even
            grasp the concept themselves, which is why they cannot clearly express

        • Donder33

          My son is getting this crap right now (like the 26+17). He tries so hard to memorize these goofy sequences and then encounters problems on a quiz that are not the specific examples he memorized. He ends up with zeros on the quizzes. Somehow he is getting the impression that math is all about memorizing!! I have given him two other ways to do these 6+7 is 13 then 2+1+(carried 1) is 4 4 is in the 10’s place so 43 is the answer OR at the 10’s place add 20+10 to get 30 then at the ones add 6+7 to get 13, then add 30+13 for 43. These he understands but if he tries them in class his teacher tells him no he is thinking about it all wrong!

          • Stephen L. Hall #NonquamTrump

            Wait until he has to suffer through that idiotic Lattice method of multiplying that they have developed, apparently just to confuse people pointlessly.

          • http://wolfmoon1776.wordpress.com/ Wolf Moon

            Just looked. OMG.

            Lattice may make sense for some kids, being fundamentally equivalent to long multiplication, but I just don’t see it as advantageous. Are they using this INSTEAD of long multiplication? That sounds hokey. Offering it as an option makes more sense, if any.

            Honestly, I suspect it got “green-lighted” for “diversity” reasons. Just sayin’. Are a lot of immigrant kids using it?

          • SpaceRacer423

            have you talked to the teacher?

            I come from a family of teachers, only one of which is in common core.

            Any teacher worth having should be willing to sit down and show you the method as well so you can help. If they are not willing to do that then please find a new teacher.

            Trying to get the kid to learn one method at home and another at school is really asking a lot of the little guy.

            If you’ve worked with the teacher and your son still isn’t getting it, then please look into other options.
            If worst case scenario youre stuck, please talk to the teacher and see if he/she will agree to at least just grade your son’s answers and not his process. Then either find a math tutor or instruct him yourself while telling him not to worry about how the teacher solves his/her problems.
            best of luck!

          • SpaceRacer423

            I should add that I completely understand how your son feels.
            When I was in 4th grade my teacher used the “canning” method. I struggled to repeat the process on my homework and my mom tried to show how she had learned. That made matters worse as I was now trying to use a combination of methods.
            My mom went to my teacher and asked her to show her canning. The teacher refused.
            I didn’t want to switch classes and luckily I caught on.
            However that teacher was way out of line to refuse to involve my mother in my education.
            Mom is now a teacher herself, history not math, and I’ve known her to go well out of her way to involve any interested parent.

          • BronxJo

            OK, I give up; what is the canning method? Searching “teaching math canning method” gets nothing. You don’t mean those little counters they use in primary grades, as a way to not force memorization?

          • SpaceRacer423

            no. its been a long time I’ll try to explain it the best I can.

            Basically it was adding 3 or more 2 digit or bigger numbers:

            + 7,903

            you would start in the right column as normal, but once you counted past ten you would “can the one” and place it to the right of the problem. canning meant to circle.

            ….5,408 (1)
            ..+7,903 (1)

            next you would add the numbers you had circled and place that number on top of the next column, then scratch them out.
            …… [2]
            …5,408 (x)
            + 7,903 (x)

            Then repeat the process with the next column.
            ..5,408 (x)
            +7,903 (x)
            Then scratch and repeat.
            The point is to help keep track of the numbers you are carrying over.
            Here it kinda makes sense, however it quickly becomes a complete cluster when you try to use it on ten or more eight to ten digit numbers.
            Worse, it only works with addition and doesn’t carry over to subtraction or multiplication.
            This teaching fad quickly died for good reason.

            Teaching styles are always fads.
            Lots of us were taught math many different ways.
            Twitchy put out a very poor article.
            I’m willing to bet these two examples aren’t even from the same teaching method. They even admitted that they cant say for sure example one was common core.
            The truth is there are dozens of math methods out there always falling in and out of favor and constantly being repackaged. in fact, I’m relatively sure that example one was how my grandmother learned basic math in the late ’30s.

          • BronxJo

            I would explain the silly method and make the child do the homework as asked, then show them that adding 9+8, then 17 plus 3 and carrying the 2 to the next column column is more efficient for their own use. If they didn’t know what 9+8 is, would be a time for a memorizing contest.

          • Donder33

            We are working against the teacher on this one. Since we took on these more complicated problems with him at home he has learned to do them in his head without learning the garbage method the teacher is pushing. He still gets zeros since he does not demonstrate on paper the method he is using; he just writes the correct answer and in math that is what matters.

          • SpaceRacer423

            Im sorry to hear that,
            As I said, I come from a whole family full of teachers and even I think that its pretty sorry for a teacher to push using their method over getting the correct answer. In my opinion it shouldn’t matter how the kid gets the correct answer, so long as it comes from his own head and the results are consistent.
            If talking to the teacher doesn’t help then maybe you can talk to the administration about switching your son to a new class at semester.
            again, best of luck.

          • BronxJo

            I went to many different schools, all over the country, as dad was civilian Navy, so was exposed to lots of versions of new math, etc. Both of these examples are absurd. What works is the basics *first* once you have rote memorization of basic integer addition/subtraction, then multiplication/division down, then some tricks to help do long columns etc are helpful. Both of those would go in the mental trash pile. They do not even understand the key way to use 10’s, which is one of your examples, 20+10 then 6+7. If the child doesn’t know what 15-7 = or what 6+7 =, no amount of gymnastics will help here.

            My childrens’ parochial school had just gotten a new math curriculum after I enrolled our oldest, and I was sure I’d have to do the drills myself. Luckily, the primary math teacher tough both the books and pages of addition/subtraction drills (10X each all the 2’s tonight, etc) to 2nd graders for homework and same with multiplication/division to 3rd.

  • divingpetrel

    What the F is this [email protected] If you want to subtract 7 from 15 just do it. Good Lord this has ZERO application in real life.

  • John Howard

    Seems to me that 26 + 17 “solution” was written by someone at the IRS.

    • http://wolfmoon1776.wordpress.com/ Wolf Moon


  • Ellis Reyes

    Written by a lawyer not a math teacher.

  • John Howard

    “Siri. What’s 15 – 7?”


    “You’re F’ing kidding me, right?”

  • Chris Chambers

    Written by a Communist, not a Patriot.

  • John Howard

    What’s $17 trillion minus Barack Obama?
    [A good start!]

    • in_awe

      It is still $17 trillion:

      $17T – 0 = $17T

  • Netmilsmom

    I just told my homeschooled with Saxon Math kids, “Get your degree kids and you’ll make huge money with no competition from those younger then you. Count yourself blessed.”

    • http://wolfmoon1776.wordpress.com/ Wolf Moon

      Can you elaborate? I used K12 for my son and was quite happy, although that was mostly because the teaching was pure teaching, and no indoctrination or fluff.

  • poopjuice

    I have four children still in school. Grades 4, 7, 9 and 10. b My 10th grader has been in gifted math since 2nd grade. He’s gotten straight A’s and been on the honor roll since kindergarten. He’s a smart kid (not bragging because he’s WAAAAY smarter than we are!) He loves school, is really engaged, well liked by his teachers, has always gone above and beyond and does his homework without prompting. (Don’t worry, none of the other kids are this easy).

    So I found it very odd when he came home 2 weeks after school started complaining that math was making absolutely NO sense. He said it’s like some foreign language that he’s never heard or seen before. His entire class of gifted high school students is either failing or just barely passing. He only has a B (which is unheard of for him). He’s in advanced Trig and calculus and the questions are like none I’ve ever seen, not even on “brain teasers”, the MENSA test or the SAT/ACT. They are so convoluted and complicated. Now I feel really bad for my 4th grader who has always grasped math concepts quickly (though doesn’t have the work habits of her brother) who has cried several times a week over her homework because it makes no sense. Her father and I both have advanced college degrees and it literally takes us several minutes to even figure out what the QUESTION is on her math papers.

    I am all for challenging children in school and setting high expectations. But to go from 2+2 = 4 to “What number that is the number one multiplied by 2 added to another number of the same equals a number that is evenly divisible by either one of those numbers or if added together equal that number?”

    This seems like they’re trying to weed out the smart kids, discourage the average and LD kids and teach the kids just starting school a language (math, english, “history”, etc) that their parents have never heard of and makes no sense to anyone outside of the teachers so the schools can now say “Your parents won’t understand this. We are the only ones who can help you”

    • SpaceRacer423

      the same thing happened in my family.
      Im two years older than my sister.
      I averaged a 100%+ on every geometry test in 1998-1999.
      Two years later they change the teaching method and all of a sudden I cant even help her with her homework.
      She wasn’t the only one who needed help.
      Out of 28 kids, 20 of them had to retake geometry the next year.
      10th grade is WAY to late to switch up teaching methods.
      The school was trying to teach the most advanced of the method to students who had never used it for the basics.
      To make matters worse, the teacher who was forced to teach it only had a couple of weeks to learn the concepts herself before being tasked with teaching it.
      Honestly, what did they expect to happen?

      • http://wolfmoon1776.wordpress.com/ Wolf Moon

        There is too much experimentation in the field these days. Things like this shouldn’t happen.

        I haven’t seen how they’re teaching geometry now, but the fact that they changed it scares me a bit. At this point in history, it’s far easier to change things to a worse method than a better one.

  • Wiki David

    Fun read but anyone notice most of students don’t graduate and can’t perform any type of math. They use their EBT card until its rejected then wait for the first of the month for the card to get reloaded. TFIFY.

  • Will Cross

    As a math tutor, this makes perfect sense to me (though the wording is a bit odd).

    • http://wolfmoon1776.wordpress.com/ Wolf Moon

      Yes. The wording is the problem, IMO.

  • JustLikeAnimals

    I have a Ph.D. and have taught astronomy and advanced physics. So, I just added 26+17 and got 43. But I guess I can do that because of my advanced degrees. Jeez. We are raising a bunch of idiots who’ll need everything explained in some convoluted process administered by the government. Just what liberals want…….perpetual job security. God help this country.

  • amyshulk

    Ah, intuitive math! This is how i always did it, when I worked at a donut shop in the 70’s. No calculator or register to add up the 15, 29, 34, etc. cent donuts so I’d do it in my head this way.

  • Laurie Wielenga

    What’s the source on these photos? Who is the publisher of this worksheet? There are a lot of publishers putting out material they claim is “Common Core” but that doesn’t mean they are actually aligned or interpreting the standards accurately. There have always been bad educational publishers out there, and that will continue to do the case. Most of these sites I’ve seen criticizing Common Core work are from independent publishers, not from the CCSS initiative itself. http://www.corestandards.org/Math

  • Male Factor

    This all seems designed to keep Obama honest when he says “Let me be clear! raising the debt ceiling will in no way add to our debt”

    • in_awe

      Or in mid-May when he ordered the Secretary of the Treasury to stop accounting for additional debt so as to not breech the debt limit. So, since May 17th the national debt has been fixed just $25MM short if the debt limit. This of course allowed Obama to choose the most politically expedient date to create a “crisis”. We have been in violation of the debt limit since mid-May and none of the MSM manages to report that reality.

  • KentM

    Basic math works just fine why do they keep screwing with it. Some things you cannot change hoping for a different result. Only in Obamaville does this make sense in the real world you would be looked up as stupid.

  • Frustrated Teacher

    It’s Jeb Bush trying to kill off the Public schools once and for all so his charter schools rank higher…follow the money!

  • yestradamous

    The second tweet is an OK way to add numbers, if that’s how your brain happens to picture how to do addition. But the explanation is extremely badly worded. I had to read it three times and I have an engineering degree. They are doing subtraction (17-4=13) but are not expressing it as such. Why?
    “use a number that adds with the 6 in 26 to make a ten.”
    “breaking apart numbers to make a ten.” Bizarre.

  • SpaceRacer423

    This is possibly the WORST article ever to appear on Twitchy.
    I don’t care about down votes,
    I’ll say directly, the twitchy staff should be embarrassed this appears on their site.
    Dear Twitchy Staff,
    Please take me back to Journalism 101 and tell me when it’s considered honest reporting to use an unsighted piece of evidence that you admit you can not directly tie to the subject at hand?
    Is that ever considered good journalism?
    Here you not only used it, you LED with it.
    Would you allow Slate or Huffpo to post a random pic of a homophobic slur scribbled on a bathroom stall and say: “We cant say the source of this slur, but based on what we’ve seen elsewhere, it has all the hallmarks of right wing hate.” (post link to repubs speaking against gay marriage)?
    That is exactly what you did.
    Twitchy needs to live up to the same standards it asks of others.
    The article needs to be updated with evidence that it CAN tie directly to Common Core. It should be also noted that the article was updated and why.
    If Twitchy Staff can not find such evidence, then the story should be pulled entirely and issue a correction.
    This is a basic journalism standard.
    I’m not mad twitchy,
    but I’m very disappointed.

    • VerminMcCann

      Go to bed.

      • SpaceRacer423


    • tarandfeatherthecrooks

      Dear American Educator, Please take me back to Education 101 and tell me when it’s honest to use untested, time consuming, methods to force teachers to appease non-parent sources by submitting unreasonable teaching plans that look great on paper, but keep developing minds hostage to the prison of Political Insanity and all on the Taxpayer Expenses Ledger.

  • floridaobserver

    This is the nail in the math coffin. Prior to common core, younger cashiers just do not know how to make change without computers. One thought he was a smartypants and said he calculates before he enters the figures into the computer. He did ours and shorted us our correct change. We called him on it and I don’t think he will do that again…calculate in his head, I mean.

  • Guest

    what was wrong with basic math, this simply does not add up.

  • Mageek

    This has been taught like this for years. Now everyone is paying attention. It’s called making sense of the Base 10 number system.

    • ThisnThatNH

      Wrong. It’s being used to teach simple addition.

  • DLago

    Very interesting points here about the forced reduction of parental involvement via simple math problems. I remember when I was a kid my parents would show me shortcuts around the math processes my teachers were teaching. Only to find out these “shortcuts” were the ways the problems have been solved hundreds of years.

  • Greg Dickinson

    I dunno, this is pretty much how I add 2 and 3 digit numbers in my head. But it would definitely be a bit weird to teach 3rd graders how to do this off the bat.

  • GulfPundit

    26 + 10 = 36, 36 + 7 = 43
    Good teaching includes an ability to simplify the complex and make it understandable. That convoluted mess is malpractice.

    • LJ

      you are doing the exact same thing except picking the second number to “simplify” by subtracting 7 to get to a 10 and adding it back in at the end
      your process
      17-7 = 10
      26+10 = 36
      36+7 = 43

      their process is to “simplify” the first number by adding 4 to get to a 10 and subtracting it back out

      their process
      26+4 = 30
      17-4 = 13
      30+13 = 43

      • GulfPundit

        No I’m not. 17= 10 + 7. 26+10=36, 36+7=43. Period. End. Full stop. You just break one number into its parts and add them to the other. A 4? Why introduce a number that’s not even in the damn problem? There’s a 40, not a 4. And why use subtraction to explain an addition problem? Talk about confusing.

        • LJ

          there is not such mathematical operation called “breaking apart” you are in fact doing the same thing they and I did but skipping steps. it would be a incomplete proof doing it the way you are trying to do it. if you have a variable you cant “break it apart” you have to perform an operation on it to change it. You’re kind of proving my point that it is extremely important to learn this concept early or you will not comprehend it as readily when it becomes the mainstay in later math. Im not going to argue it with you however take this to anyone that has ever even heard of a mathematical proof and they will say the same thing. yours would be invalid.

          • GulfPundit

            There isn’t? Well, I just did it. Here, let me do it again. 242 = 200 + 40 + 2.

            And yes, I skipped steps. That’s the point!

          • LJ

            nope, mathematically what you did was subtract 40 and 2 from 242 to get 200. thats the operation. not “breaking up”

          • GulfPundit

            Call it whatever you want, the goal is to teach effectively. And I’d rather be understood than stroke my ego at the expense of learning.

          • LJ

            you cant “call it whatever you want” and then say “teach effectively” Its a fundamental concept that you have to understand to progress in mathematics. you dont understand my point because obviously you were never taught effectively. the way you are trying to explain it has no basis in mathematical laws hence invalid. this means in higher math it will not hold up

          • GulfPundit

            No I wasn’t taught math effectively. That’s why people pay me to do math for them. So the next time I’m going over the discounted cash flow analysis of a deal with a client, I let them know about your learned opinion of my skills

          • LJ

            well considering I posted an equation 17-7 = 10 and your response was no i did 17 = 10 + 7. and you didnt realize thats the same thing kind of is a give away.

        • LJ

          and as far as the 4, why did you pick the 10 and 7. they are “not even in the damn problem” either.. thinking your way. theres only a 17. YOU chose to pick 10 and 7. why not 8 and 9 or 16 and 1 etc. YOU chose 10 and 7 because 10 is easier to add. so why chose 4. because 26 + 4 is a multiple of 10 which is easier to add in the same way you thought and the invaluble lesson in this is if you have an equation you can add something into it as long as you later subtract it out. It is called the Cancellation Property of Addition.

          • GulfPundit

            10 and 7 are in the problem. They add up to 17!

          • LJ

            yes you are right 10 and 7 is one way to get to 17. so is (1,16)(2,15)(3,14)(4,13)(5,12)(6,11)(8,9) and each point will work just as (10,7) will, you just chose that one because its easier for you to add in this case. but its important to know all those points will work too, why? because in higher math you may have to chose another point or function, or variable, or integral etc etc. the way you are explaining it doesnt convey the actual math that is taking place. its saying “this is the way I see it the easiest” but the most important concept is what you are actually doing. which comes back to Cancellation Property of Addition.

          • GulfPundit

            That’s because 17 has a 1(10) and a 7. What’s this need to make things more complicated than they have to be? You’re trying to get across higher math? Get them to calculate 26+17 for crying out loud! Put the cart before the horse much? You teach people what they need to know at that time. No more, no less. It’s a process that can’t be rushed.

            Full disclosure: Among other things, I teach financial and real estate math to adults part-time. Everything from loan amortization to cash flow analysis to taxes. One of the most frequent and welcome comments I get from students is how much they appreciate that I don’t talk over their heads and that I make complex subjects easy to understand.

          • LJ

            Your right I only have a BS in math and physics and MS in math taught everything from pre cal to abstract algebra so I in no way have any idea what Im talking about.

          • GulfPundit

            I didn’t question your math proficiency, did I? You started that nonsense. So stop defending yourself from non-existent attacks.

          • LJ

            would also like to know how you came to the conclusion the example above is the only way kids are being taught to add integers. I find it hard to believe that in all your amortization books they used the most complicated application to get across a method. I know in every math book ive seen they use an extremely rudimentary example for any new concept…

  • SimpleFacts

    Third grade? My last math course was a calculus class in partial Integration. I can’t answer the first question at all and the second completely confused me. Why the mental gymnastics to do a simple arithmetic problem; seems like a five minute answer to a 10 second question. Oh, wait. I got it: liberal thinking.

    • GulfPundit

      It is said that a camel is a horse designed by committee. That camel has three humps.

  • tarandfeatherthecrooks

    It’s all about making people insane.

  • umbrarchist

    CCSS means Confused Children Stay Stupid

    I can see what they are doing but I already understand the math. That system is going to make sure the kids do not understand it.

    • http://wolfmoon1776.wordpress.com/ Wolf Moon

      Yeah – those explanations are scary. Glad my math problems never looked like these. That second one is jaw-dropping.

  • WJM980

    So in other words, someone sees a ridiculous problem, purports that this is what Common Core is like, and then all the sheeple get their panties in a bunch. Read the freaking standards yourselves people. Nowhere does it require some convoluted method be the only method used for learning.

  • Tiffany

    The common core doesn’t provide any math questions so I don’t see how it can have the “hallmarks” of common core. That said, taking the first number to a multiple of 10 and then going from there is how I personally add in my head. It looks rather ridiculous when explained in steps on paper though which is why I’ve mostly kept the strategy to myself.

  • Idl

    All these “innovations” seem to me to be people justifying their 6 figure salaries by reinventing the wheel every couple of years. American society is fraught with examples of this and not just in education.

    • http://wolfmoon1776.wordpress.com/ Wolf Moon

      Exactly. These are the methods that were not even judged to be book-worthy in the old days. They do foreshadow algebra, and I think that is the intent. But I am not convinced that introducing math confusion in the third grade is worth that nebulous potential benefit.

      I was saying that my teachers back in the old days taught us such methods as back-ups to the normal way, so we could do things in our heads faster. But they clearly have not thought out HOW to teach such things, and likely because the methods are not helpful for everybody. The way people do math in their heads is a very individualized thing. The approach needs to be customized – not made into one-size-fits-all.

  • JoH113

    Aside from the wording (which was obviously contrived to trigger latent schizophrenia), why are these kids still messing around with addition and subtraction in third grade? I remember my third grade class learning division, and word problems dealing with the same. I wasn’t even in the “fast” class.

    • http://freerepublic.com GOPcongress

      JoH, here in Los Angeles Unified School district, the majority sixth-graders cannot memorize the 10 x 10 multiplication table. Obviously, with instructions as convoluted such as this, added to the fact that most individuals have no fathers and even less discipline in their families, it is no wonder that a higher percentage of African-Americans are less educated than their peers back in our horrendous days of segregation. This is intolerable, and is entirely the blame of the socialist Democrat Party policies.

  • $2004855

    These seem engineered to get children to count on their fingers.

  • Mary Kay Higgins

    This is stupid. Just stupid. Poor kids.

  • Eric Blake

    It makes sense but it is really convoluted and complicated. what happened to carrying over the 1?

  • Mike

    I recently had the opportunity to counted back change to an individual. This is a lost art with modern cash registers. The individual could not figure out how I was giving him back the same ($40) amount he had given me. It took he and his friends a minute to figure it out.

  • LJ

    the second is the same as the first just written in sentence form. an extremely important principle when you get to things like ordinary differential equations and abstract algebra. I remember one project we had in grad school was to write a “paper” in math and the grade was based on who could write the most mathematically sound paper that when given to the English prof looked the weirdest to him. good times.

  • Kari Sanborn

    The top picture I see all the time on my kids math sheets. They complain “Why can’t I just subtract 15-7??” Some of their teachers are having a hard time with it too.

  • GilaMonster1962

    What was wrong with 6 + 7 = 13, put 3 in the “ones” column and carry the 1 in the “tens” column. Now, in the tens column, 2 + 1 + 1 (carried) = 4. So the answer is 43?

    Who came up with this bizarre way to add numbers to makes no logical sense or follows an easy progression? Why are 3rd graders still learning addition? As far as I can remember, we were on to simple multiplication and division by that point.

    Maybe it has something to do with the bizarre and illogical method being taught for how to add numbers?

    Plus… it may work for small numbers, but how would you apply that method to larger numbers, (which follows a natural progression of identical principles using the method I learned by and just adds a “hundreds” column, then “thousands,” etc.

    How do you easily apply this to addition on something like 43,506 + 2,489?

    • http://wolfmoon1776.wordpress.com/ Wolf Moon

      Gila – let me start off by saying that Common Core is horrible. Now let me explain why. One failure is manifestly obvious from the second problem.

      It’s very clear to me (computer programmer) what they are doing – trying to teach an algorithm for adding in your head on sight, without carrying numbers. The one they try to explain here is one I often use. I also use a variant of it for grouping things in programs.

      But this explanation is HORRIBLE. The fact that a math minor doesn’t get it in the tweet matches my shock. If I documented this algorithm like this, none of my coworkers would understand it.

      Back in the old days, we learned the standard way you describe, which is the most general way to do it. Everybody should know that. Our little old lady country teacher with cats-eye glasses on a chain also taught us to discover new ways to do things in our head, but did not try to make us all do the same thing. By patiently working with each one of us, she could tell what made sense to us, and encouraged those methods.

      THAT was genius. You’ll hear the EXACT same thing from that annoying autistic boy genius in the TED talk – you need to develop your own way of thinking about things. SO critical.

      Common Core? A perfect violation of the strength of individual thinking. We need Individual Core. The exact opposite.

      • GilaMonster1962

        All I can say is while I figured the first one out after ogling it for a few, (at least I THINK the answer is “C”,) the second made no sense to me either, and while not a mathemetician, I do have a head for regular old math and algebra.

        What boggles my mind is that we were consistently at or near the top of the world in education standards using the old methods. They worked for hundreds of years, so why change them up? We now spend more per student in real dollars adjusted for inflation than ever before and the outcome is worse.

        Shouldn’t this ring some alarm bells that something is seriously askew? (My mom was a teacher and nobody dictated to her how to teach her subjects, only demanded that she get the knowledge into her students heads so they were prepared for the next grade.)

        As for how I do math in my head, I don’t even know. It varies depending on the problem, and ends up being a mish mash of methods with larger problems. The answers end up right so I’m not going to question it.

        That only reinforces the truth of what you said about how individual ways of thinking need to be encouraged, though. I have to wonder what other subjects are being mauled by our public schools as well when they’ve managed to make math, the most rigid of the rigid sciences, ambiguous…

  • GilaMonster1962

    Another issue I just thought of… How would one add up an entire column of numbers using this method? It may work using two numbers or even three, but nobody using this method is ever going to be able to cross check their math using different methods to balance their bank accounts…

  • BenInNY

    This looks like what happens when you use google to translate from English to Chinese and back again.
    1: “When I went to Moscow I farted on a statue of Lenin”
    2: “當我去到莫斯科,我放屁列寧的雕像”
    3: “When I went to Moscow, I fart Lenin statue.”
    Man that would be a painful fart, much like this attempt at math.

  • Patferr

    I am not a HUGE fan of Common Core, because of the confusion it puts on the kids without really explaining itself correctly, but, that being said, I understood BOTH problems and what they are TRYING to do, to make it easier to basically count the numbers up in your head it seems like to me. Not many people use calculators anymore, unless their phone has a app for that lol. But in the first one, its trying to get you to break the problem down into 5’s and 10’s so you can subtract it easier. I would think there are easier ways, but it’s Obvious C is the answer because 8 is the outcome you are looking for. I didn’t need the “Number Sentence” to find that number since I can subtract 7 from 15 in my head ( 7 is the same at 5+2, so 15-5=10 and 10-2=8, or if you play cribbage a lot, you know that 8 + 7 = 15, so 15-7=8. But anyway, I understood it and in 3rd grade, I could have gotten that too.
    The 2nd one is a little more quirky if you aren’t mathematically inclined.
    26 + 17 = ?? You know 7+6 = 13, so carry the one and you get 43. OR, you can do what they did by taking 4 out of 17 and making it 13, and bringing 26 up to 30 by adding 4, which would leave you 30+13 which is much easier to add, it = 43. Not hard, but for 3rd grade, the lining it up with the 26 on top and 17 underneath, and putting the line under it and adding that way seems easier for that age if you ask me. JMHO.

  • Truth

    Liberals control our education system. Teaching this nonsense will surely achieve their goal of turning us into a third rate country.

  • ZH38

    A grid-style logic puzzle would make the kids beef up their problem solving skills without confusing them.

  • charlesepperson

    These make perfect sense to me. They are tricks to help work out the problems in your head. The first one is how I do it all the time.

    These two are non issues.