Wednesday, February 15, 2006

Math Silliness and Smarts

Terri (2nd grade) was supposed to do 2 pages of Math the other day before - I forget what else - watching a movie or something. She brought me her Math book when she was through (simple addition problems of three or four one-digit numbers) and I saw a page filled with numbers that looked way too big. It almost looked like she had just scribbled some numbers down to make it look like it was done. My mind was all too ready to jump to this conclusion when I happened to notice an interesting pattern Here are a few examples. See if you see what I saw (G)...

2
3
+7
--
30

2
7
+3
--
30

7
3
+7
--
80

8
2
+8
--
90

5
1
2
+6
--
518

Once I figured out what she had done, I recognized that her addition was almost flawless (she got one of the big numbers - which she was obviously doing in her head - off by one), she simply didn't understand how the problems were set-up.

So for:

2
3
+7
--

she was adding 23 + 7

and for

5
1
2
+6
--

she was adding 512 + 6

I never cease to be amazed (and often inspired) by the way children think.

And she did get to watch the movie. :)

Mom learned an important lesson and is thinking of handling Math a little differently in the future.

2 comments:

Jennie C. said...

Thanks for sharing. I just love the way these children of ours think sometimes. I hereby pledge to make the extra effort to see their genius more often...even if the answer is still wrong. :-)

Love2Learn Mom said...

;)