Concept

John Saxon (educator)

Résumé
John Harold Saxon Jr. (10 December 1923 – 17 October 1996) was an American mathematics educator who authored or co-authored and self-published a series of textbooks, collectively using an incremental teaching style which became known as Saxon math. Saxon was born in Georgia to parents John Harold and Zollie McArthur Saxon. He graduated from Athens High School in 1941 in Athens, Georgia, and later attended the University of Georgia. He earned a bachelor's degree in engineering from the United States Military Academy at West Point in 1949 and his master's degree in electrical engineering in 1961. He became an officer in the United States Army Air Forces, commanding a B-17 Flying Fortress in World War II. He later joined United States Air Force, flying 55 missions in a B-26 Invader on Night Intruder missions during the Korean War and reaching the rank of lieutenant colonel. In 1953, he survived a crash when a B-25 Mitchell engine failed on takeoff. That year, he also received a bachelor's degree in aeronautical engineering from the Air Force Institute of Technology at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base in Dayton, Ohio. Saxon also taught engineering at the United States Air Force Academy for five years. After his retirement from the Air Force in the 1970, he settled in Norman, Oklahoma. He taught algebra part-time at Rose State College in Midwest City, Oklahoma. Throughout the 1980s and 1990s, Saxon spoke out against mathematics education reform efforts that he believed would lead to a disaster in math and science education. He wrote or co-wrote a series of nine mathematics textbooks for kindergarten through high school which use an incremental teaching method often called "Saxon math". According to Saxon in media interviews from the 1980s and early 1990s and documentation coming with the high-school level textbooks, the inclusion of specialised and/or somewhat uncommon words such as "sciolist" in the story problems is intended as a vocabulary builder in preparation for the verbal section of the SAT and similar tests.
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