France wants to fix 'catastrophic' math scores, conquer fear

February 12, 2018

France's government is worried about how many of its schoolchildren consider themselves "stupid at math."

The education minister released a report Monday commissioned by renowned mathematician and legislator Cedric Villani describing "catastrophic" scores and recommending 21 steps to turn things around.

France's have been sinking on international rankings for most of this century. The report warns that the current system is leading to "a lasting loss of self-esteem" that continues into adulthood, and greater inequality between those strong in and the rest.

The urges better math training for primary school teachers, most of whom come from literary or social studies backgrounds. It recommends more hands-on activities, efforts to teach children early to calculate in their heads, and support for high-schoolers struggling with abstract math.

Explore further: Engaging children in math at home equals a boost in more than just math skills

Related Stories

Video games can have lasting impact on learning

September 12, 2016

A computer-based brain training program developed at Yale University helps improve student performance in reading and math—in some cases even more than individualized tutoring, according to a new study published Sept. 12 ...

Preschool teachers need better training in science

September 26, 2017

Preschool instructors appear to lack the knowledge, skills and confidence to effectively teach their young students science - a problem that is likely contributing to America's poor global performance in this crucially important ...

Recommended for you

How other people affect our interpersonal space

May 24, 2018

Have you ever felt the urge to cross the road or move seats on a train after a conversation taking place nearby suddenly becomes aggressive? Well, for the first time a scientific study has shown how the size of your interpersonal ...

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.