Tuesday, December 9, 2008

I Can Do Math!

This summer, on a whim, I checked out this book called The Lemonade War by Jacqueline Davies. And by whim I mean that it was a display book on a table in our new library and it caught my eye.

I read the book before giving it to the kids because I wasn't familiar with the author, etc...

I let my older two read it (11 & 10) with discussion because topics like divorce, jealousy and pride (you know the sad parts of real life) are in there.

It's been a few months since I read it and although I thought it was really good, I didn't think too much about it.

But now, twelve weeks into school, I realize how much that book helped me with math!

Trying not to write spoilers, the book is about an older boy who struggles with math and his bright little sister who will be advanced into his grade and his struggles with not feeling smart. They have a lemonade stand contest and the story ends very well.

But all along his journey, he practices putting algebraic math into "pictures" that he can wrap his brain around and guess what? My brain wrapped around it.

I can now help Leisl with her Singapore 5A math. And since her brain works like mine and not like her Dad's genius math brain, I can explain it to her in a way she understands. Visually.

You know, with pictures!!

It's been a blessing and I am so encouraged to "get" something that has eluded me all my life.

Seriously, algebra was very painful. There was no one in my family that could help me with homework except my Dad who was often out to sea (Navy). Algebra specifically was a frustrating and, for me, shameful experience.

All last year when Leisl's math would toss in an Algebra problem I would call the Captain at work or we would wait until he came home. I could never remember how to set-up the problem. I was making myself nutty and confusing poor Leisl. I kept trying to remember which formula went with what type of problem.

My brain doesn't work like that and I just learned that it's okay.

I have to think through the problem logically and draw a little picture.

And now, decades after my last math class, I get it. Finally.

Better late than never I say.

Just thought I'd share in case there are other very visual, math challenged parents out there.

Perhaps it will help you too.


Ann said...

That has been the kind of year you have been having. The "gettin it" kinda year...being able to do things you never thought you could...Jogging, King James Bible and Algebra. I know there's more...hmmm

YEAH!!! I am so excited for you.

Thank you Lord for all the gifts you have given Lainie this year, and for just lovin on her and showing her that she truly, "...can do all things through YOU her strengthen her"
Phil 4:13

Lainie said...

Oh my! You're right--it has been that kind of year!

Isn't the Lord good? He's so good and He's so good to me. (Are you singing in your head? hee hee)

I can't wait to see what else He has in store for me because I'm having a blast!!

I would be content with running, KJV and math but I know how generous and kind-hearted He is so bring it on! :)

I miss you---it was nice to chat on the phone last night and hear your voice.

Give Katie-kins a big hug from me oh and give her this too


don't worry she'll know all about it :)

Ann said...

she squealed, "That's Aaaawesome" ehhehehe

It was nice to hear your voice too...Monday nights seem to be our nights. all is better in Ann-land when Lainie is in it:) hehehehe

I am excited too...We have a great big generous Daddy...don't ya just love that!

Oh my goodness...now Katie is scheming on how to make a baby koala...heheheheh too funny

crystal said...

(trying again)

Rejoicing with you that a book helped with math!!! wahoo!!!!

If that book doesn't cover everything in Singapore, email me. I love
about bar diagrams. :-) and p.s. Julie had to help me in 5A when I
started using Singapore.


Mrs. Bridget G. said...

Where was that book when i was in High School? And i'm sorry to say i am as bad in math now as i was then!

Lainie said...

Don't worry you'll get it! Especially as your children get older and you help them with their school work.

It's amazing how much has "clicked" as I've gotten older.

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