In 2002 Paul Lockhart wrote an article* A Mathematician’s Lament*. His article is a thought provoking critique of the K-12 education system’s math curriculum. It can be found here:

http://www.maa.org/devlin/lockhartslament.pdf

One of my favorite passages:

The first thing to understand is that mathematics is an art. The difference between math and the other arts, such as music and painting, is that our culture does not recognize it as such. Everyone understandsthat poets, painters, and musicians create works of art, and are expressing themselves in word, image, and sound. In fact, our society is rather generous when it comes to creative expression; architects, chefs, and even television directors are considered to be working artists. So why not mathematicians?

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It should probably also be mentioned that Lockhart has a book that is more or less an expansion of his article. If your library has it, you should have a look.