ERIC Number: ED237584
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1983-Sep
Reference Count: 0
Improving the Mathematical Skills of Low Achievers. ERIC/CUE Fact Sheet Number 18.
Poor, minority, and low ability students suffer most from the general lack of sustained opportunity to study mathematics in American public schools. Studies indicate that preschool and kindergarten students show only minor social class or racial differences in mathematical thinking and that differences in mathematical performance among older students directly relate to the amount of math studied. A 1978 National Assessment of Educational Progress study of selected 9-, 13-, and 17-year-olds indicates that while the majority of American 17-year-olds have had 2 years of high school mathematics, black students have had only one year. While the National Assessment found no racial differences in cognitive level performance in mathematics, blacks had increasing difficulty with mathematical content as they became older. At age 9, blacks showed problems with variables and relationships; by age 17, they showed problems in all mathematical content areas. Although black students showed more positive attitudes towards math learning than their white counterparts at all age levels tested, this motivation alone was not sufficient to insure successful math performance. The National Diffusion Network offers a catalog of successful public school mathematics education programs. Most effective programs have included the following elements: individualized and small group instruction, calculator usage, laboratory work, cross-age tutoring, remedial pull out, and team games. (LP)
Descriptors: Academic Ability, Black Students, Disadvantaged Youth, Economically Disadvantaged, Educational Improvement, Educational Needs, Educational Research, Elementary Secondary Education, Learning Problems, Low Achievement, Mathematical Enrichment, Mathematics Achievement, Mathematics Education, Mathematics Skills, Minority Group Children
Publication Type: Guides - Non-Classroom; ERIC Publications; ERIC Digests in Full Text
Education Level: N/A
Audience: Teachers; Administrators; Practitioners
Authoring Institution: ERIC Clearinghouse on Urban Education, New York, NY.
Identifiers: National Assessment of Educational Progress; PF Project