Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Numbers, Words and Fire

I always had trouble with word problems in math class in school. I was good in math and I could read well, but when you put the two together it's like I was dyslexic. Whatever was being searched for in those riddles was beyond me. So I felt especially helpless tonight when C was trying to tackle a problem for school and asked me for assistance. Here's the problem:

Kate is 4 years older than Margaret. In 7 years, the sum of their ages will be 70. How old are they now? How do you find Kate's age using Margaret's?

I came up with the right answer, but I can't figure out how to explain how I got it, and the instructions ask for a table to show your work.

Parenting is hard enough with having to teach your kids right from wrong, to stay away from strangers, and which is their right foot and which is their left. But then you throw word problems in and it makes it only that much more difficult. It makes it about x times more difficult.

This evening I was also unable to teach GK how to use a Zippo. I blame this on her weak thumbs, which is going to be something she'll have to deal with her whole life. She gets weak thumbs from her mother.