When I recently took a job as a teacher’s aide, I stipulated that I could never assist in a classroom above second grade. Why? Because I wouldn’t be able to handle the math.
When I was in the eighth grade, I was in an advanced math class. I don’t know how I got there, but I do know that any skill I had in the numbers department ended in that class. Not only that, but it seems my brain went through some sort of regression in the summer before high school. Once I started ninth grade, algebra seemed as easy as studying metaphysics…in Latin.
This did not lead to a stellar academic path. My grades were excellent in anything involving language arts, journalism and communications, but by my senior year I was taking “College Prep Math” which was taught by the football coach.
People mostly referred to the class as “College Football Math”, though that couldn’t have been farther from the truth. The goth girls and burn-out’s who sat around me didn’t know offense from defense.
Now, I have a fourth grader who is bringing home real math homework and who is participating in something called the Metric Olympics at her school. Last year, she memorized her multiplication tables in no time flat, and would finish timed-tests so quickly that I think she once gave herself a pedicure before the next kid turned in his paper.
That’s my girl! She’s a regular chip off the old block. Her father, that is. I may be bad with numbers, but I’m smart as a whip.
I married a math major.