This essay focuses on vast numbers of immigrants. if you applied the strategies that you learned in math class. That is, you could likely solve
into the ways that problems are framed. For example, could you calculate the answer to the following arithmetic problem? 642 X 439 With a little thought and effort, you could probably solve this question if you applied the strategies that you learned in math class. That is, you could likely solve it by doing something like this. 642 X 439 = 5778 1926 2568 = 281838 However, imagine that I had presented the same problem to you like this: 642 x 439 = ? Or imagine I had asked you the same problem orally.\
so straightforward, is it? Being able to solve multiplication problems is greatly facilitated by placing the numbers in vertical arrays with columns. If the numbers are not properly aligned, the task is much more difficult. In an important way, then, the organization of the numbers into a vertical array accomplishes much of the thinking necessary to solve the problem. Without this cultural tool of vertically presented columns of numbers, we are hard-pressed to do multiplication. And we tend to be unaware of how dependent our thinking is on such cultural tools until we are in a situation in which that tool is not available to us.
we do not solve multiplication problems by ourselves. We do so in conjunction with the capabilities of our cultural tools (Wertsch, 1998). And the process of formal education provides us with many such tools. It can thus be quite problematic to attempt to assess the intelligence of people with no formal schooling when testing skills that are shaped by education. In 1912, in a time of increasing racism in the United States as the country was admitting vast numbers of immigrants,
the U.S. Public Health Service hired the psychologist H. H. Goddard to help screen out immigrants with “inferior minds,” who were perceived as a threat. As new immigrants stepped off the boats at Ellis Island, they were asked various questions to assess their intelligence. . How could we go about identifying how schooling affects people’s thinking? Would it work if we just found people with differing levels of education within a particular culture and then compared how they thought? Unfortunately, it is not straightforward to study the influences of formal education on thinking; (1982).