Advertising and Memorization

Educators are quick to find fault with rote memorization. Companies with products to sell, however, will spend millions of dollars on rote memorization. Mindless repetition is the essence of advertising: a good image shown many times, a good slogan broadcast over and over again. It must work. That amount of money doesn’t often lie. Yet for something as important as the mastery of the single digit multiplication we hesitate to require memorization. We don’t wish to be accused of “drilling and killing”. In educational circles it is not fashionable. Or is it “mean spirited” to insist on repetition in order to learn something inherently valuable?