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I read "The Art of a Genius" by Micheal Michalko. This article discuss eight ways to think like Einstein. I personally like the idea that geniuses prepare themselves for chance. As we all know many of our "discoveries" were mistakes. Everyone knows that penicillin was a mistakes, but does anyone remember "slime"? It was on the market about 10 years ago. It was suppose to be another form of plastic but the scientists made a "mistake" and marketed it as "slime". But, back to "preparing themselves for chance" or "whenever we attempt to do something and fail, we end up doing something else". It is difficult for students to understand this notion. Many times in too many of our classrooms there is a right answer and a wrong answer. We don't always allow students to explore their mistakes, instead we ask them to change it and make it "right". We have to "follow the rules" whether it is in reading, math, science, and so on. I do see different curriculum that is exploring this concept a little but it is mostly for the younger grades. I believe there is a program called Math Manipulative, which is a totally hands-on approach to math for k-2. Paper and pencil activities are not introduced until 2nd or third grade. I did not work with this curriculum personally, but many teachers love it. Other teachers simply added it to their own curiculum, which is what teachers are trained to do. But it was designed to help students look at their answers in more then one way, like making addition a pattern.

-- Anonymous, January 19, 1999

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