About That ‘Common Core’ Math Problem Making the Rounds on Facebook…

Over the past week, I’ve seen this image multiple times on Facebook and elsewhere, a supposed denunciation of the Common Core version of math that kids are now learning:

That picture is especially popular on conservatives’ Facebook walls… and I’m sure one of your relatives has said something about it, too.

On the surface, it seems ridiculous. The top makes sense; the bottom is silly; screw you, Common Core!

Except that the top doesn’t make sense, the bottom does, and the connection to Common Core is completely misunderstood. (Says this math teacher.)

Here’s what’s going on:

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Why Run a 5K When You Can Run a Pi K?

The Illinois Science Council is sponsoring a Pi Day Pi K run — and I can’t resist posting about a run that’s not 3.1 miles like your typical 5K, but 3.14 miles instead!

Tickets for the March 14 run in Chicago are $25 and include a t-shirt and post-run party. Sign up before the slots are taken!

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Arizona State Senator Says He Opposes Common Core Because… It Promotes Algebra

There are legitimate reasons people might oppose Common Core, a national set of standards that 45 states have already adopted. You could say it’s too expensive for cash-strapped districts to implement, or that it doubles down on standardized testing, or that it holds students and teachers to unrealistic expectations… but when certain conservatives complain about it, they jump right to the Crazy Reasons.

Like the Alabama woman who claimed Common Core was “anti-Christian, anti-capitalism, and anti-America” indoctrination.

Or the Christian radio host who believes Common Core will somehow starve children’s souls.

But I’ll admit I’d never even considered Arizona State Senator Al Melvin‘s reason:

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David Barton, Who Makes a Living Telling Historical Lies, is Now Spreading Statistical Ones

Christian pseudohistorian David Barton used to be a math teacher. But at some point, he transitioned into teaching history, another subject he knew next to nothing about. Today, he goes around miseducating everyone he comes into contact with.

His inability to be a credible historian is well-documented to the point where a book he wrote was pulled from shelves by his Christian publishers for containing too many lies.

And earlier this month, Barton was shown telling a crowd that he speaks to more than 600 different groups a year… despite working all day long on his ranch during the summer.

But his inability to interpret statistics properly is now coming to light and every new example is just a delight to behold.

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Why Do Pastors Use Bad Statistics?

Bob Smietana points out something we’ve all known for a long time: When pastors tell you a statistic from the pulpit, you better do some fact-checking of your own.

Like these numbers Pastor Mark Driscoll pulled out of nowhere (or, quite possibly, plagiarized from some other liar):

What percentage of Americans could be classified as evangelical Christian? The answer is around 8%. There are more left handed people, more Texans, and more pet cats than evangelicals in America.

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