How to teach mathematics – Part II

Teaching the Tough Stuff

In 1967, President Lyndon Johnson rose to deliver the annual State of the Union address to the United States Congress and to announce a new front in the war on poverty1. The Head Start program for disadvantaged pre-school children was going to be expanded into the early grades of school. Johnson was planning a budget of over $100 million but Congress ultimately slashed this to just $15 million. This provoked a rethink and the project was reconceptualised as a research programme. “Follow Through” was born. Despite the circumstances of its inception, it grew to become the largest and most expensive education research project ever undertaken.

The study had a classic ‘horse-race’ design. Different sponsors were engaged to deliver programmes and the results of these programmes were to be evaluated against each other and against the results gained my similar students who were not part of the project i.e…

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