Math MadnessPosted: January 26, 2009
In a twisted science fiction-like turn of events I’m now taking fourth grade math. Or it least it feels that way whenever Ben comes back from school with his homework and asks for help. I hated fourth grade math as a fourth grader and I hate fourth grade math as a forty-year-old.
And it’s still the word problems that get me. The only real difference is that I no longer toss the textbook across the room when I get frustrated. Though I have been tempted. I guess that wouldn’t be good parental modeling. Unless I was trying to raise the math equivalent of John McEnroe: “That equation was clearly on the line!!” In retrospect my own father must have had the patience of a saint.
It’s tough when your nine-year-old realizes you’re not as smart as he thought you were. Of course he may as well learn that lesson now. But I readily admit math is not my strong suit. There’s a reason I went into the priesthood — I only ever have to count to three. Father, Son, and Holy Spirit is all the math I care to learn. Well, that and calculating the vaulted Average Sunday Attendance numbers.
Fortunately Ben can always call the math tech-support hotline, aka his maternal grandmother. A lifelong teacher, my mother-in-law often comes to the rescue. Of course he can’t call my mother — my math skills were hereditary.