Thursday, August 30, 2012

How my Dog taught me about Math

Over the summer, my wife and I adopted a puppy found in a local dumpster.  After reading about 3 or 4 books I decided I was going to teach my dog how to sit, stay, roll over, bark and……mathematics.  

How do you teach a dog math?

Very easy, but first you have to teach your dog how to bark.  Once this is done, I have trained my dog to bark twice every time I say "One plus one".  She barks three times when I say "Two plus one".  Lastly, I have trained her to remain silent when I say "Four times zero".

She understands math correct?

Before an argument is started, I do not believe she truly understand math, but only has memorized mathematical commands.  I wonder how many students go through math class with the knowledge similar to my dog; memorized facts, but has very little understanding.  

Years ago, my class was set up in a way that I was training dogs, not teaching students.  I would give students questions out of context, assign redundant homework, and lastly reward speed and repetition with marks.  My dog has taught me a more valuable lesson than I could ever provide to her; there is a large difference between memorization and knowledge.

1 comment:

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