September 20, 2012


I'm not proud of this but the math homework I helped Mia with last night kicked my ass. Reminder - Mia's in second grade. It was some shit with a butterfly, and clues, and ruling out numbers that didn't belong and it kinda made my brain turn inside out. I had flashbacks to elementary school.

I went to a private school from kindergarden through the middle of fourth grade. By the time Christmas rolled around in fourth grade, I'd heard enough about god, heard one too many racist jokes from the teaching staff, and somehow came to the realization that I hadn't learned a damn thing aside from how to effectively memorize then immediately forget bible verses written on index cards. I clued my parents into what was going on and they immediately enrolled me in public school. Where I realized that I knew less than I though, particularly about math. I struggled with math all the way through high school as a result.

Now, I'm pretty good with numbers. I have to be for my job and I kinda like them. Enemies turned friends after years of doing battle. But I'm a little bitter that I was confused by my second grader's homework. That's just not right.

Posted by Chris at September 20, 2012 7:30 AM

At my kids' school open house this year, we were informed that there is yet another new way of doing math that they will be learning this year...

I'll stick with spelling. English may be a language which doesn't make more sense, but at least they don't keep changing the way of doing spelling :)

Posted by: Kaz at September 20, 2012 9:11 AM

Just blame it on the new math...

Posted by: Tracy at September 20, 2012 9:21 AM

They teach them math in such a weird way now too. I have one in third grade this year and one in first and I have had to e-mail the teacher and use google to figure out to explain it to my child. I'm kind of scared what the really hard years are going to hold if I am having trouble in elementary school.

Posted by: Kerry at September 20, 2012 9:54 AM

Happens to all of us eventually. They taught my 3rd grader some crazy way of doing multiplication that I still don't get. Why can't they just do it the right way?

What's worse is when the math kicks the teacher's butt. My head spun when a fifth grade math teacher kept telling my son to do a word problem her way (he missed it on the test because he did it the right way). Her answer was clearly impossible no matter how you got there. Even if you couldn't do the math, you would know the answer was wrong...if you had a brain.

Posted by: Kate M at September 20, 2012 9:57 AM

ZOMG. Last night my 2nd grader's Math homework had me totally stumped and when I finally figured out the answer and how the word problem worked I felt both confuzzled by my ONGOING inability do Math and oddly also proud. Proud that I figured out that stupid problem and that I could teach my son how the problem worked!

Of course, that was closely follow by fear... of what I have to look forward to when it comes to his schooling and Math and my continued inabilities in that realm of life. I am trying to see it from a positive POV: I am getting a second chance to learn what I did not learn the first time around!

Posted by: Christina at September 20, 2012 10:07 AM

I was bad enough at math in school I'm actually looking forward to helping my daughter with her homework so I can actually learn to do math without the pressure of passing a test. :)

Posted by: j at September 20, 2012 10:10 AM

God, I hear you! It's especially frustrating when the problem is simple but the wording is so convoluted it's impossible to figure out!

Posted by: Holly at September 20, 2012 10:36 AM

In my never-ending quest of a nursing degree, I was confronted with a final math class. Dosage and calculation for med administration. As if the title being longer than the plot summary of Jersey Shore wasn't bad enough, I had never been better than a C student in math...ever.

Long story short, I had to take the class twice. HOWEVER, after receiving an F- the first time, the second time around I had an instructor, who actually gave a shit about her job/students. There are fewer things in my life that have made me prouder of myself than, my A in a collegiate level math class.

I totally sympathize with you on the stressing over having to teach kids math. The fact you are trying shows that you will find a way to help your children get it done, by any means necessary.

Good for you!


Posted by: JackassJimmy at September 20, 2012 10:55 AM

Just wait until division...holy cats that is confusing.

Posted by: linda at September 20, 2012 12:52 PM

Yeeah I am not so much a fan of math! Like so:

Posted by: Heather at September 20, 2012 3:04 PM

I am not looking forward to fractions.

Posted by: Annie at September 20, 2012 3:09 PM

not at all looking forward to that...

Posted by: kati at September 20, 2012 8:36 PM

I like math,but have some problem in fractions

Posted by: Math tutor at September 21, 2012 7:25 AM

I am a math savant. I went to a good enough school they created a special math class just for me (and 5 others I led into rebellion) so they could explore the higher math theories I was posulating.
Yet third grade found me in a shouting contest with my son's math teacher because apparently we don't teach kids to find the right answer, we teach them to find the answer they THINK is the right answer, otherwise known as "estimating". Or "new math". Or - how to make sure no one ever learns how to do math. Or - utter bullshit. Take your pick.
I feel your pain and it has nothing to do with your math or parenting skills. New math is stupid.

Posted by: That Girl at September 23, 2012 3:07 PM