#SOL17: Math Homework

math brain.jpg

I can do math.

It’s not my first choice.

Give me a book.

Let me write,

let me deliver a speech or two,

Just let me choose!

It’s not that math’s hard.

But because it’s “One Right Answer”

I fret,

I worry,

I dither,

And I change my mind


and AGAIN,


I forgot my lifelines . . .

I could have skype messaged Lynn

or text messaged Katie.

I could have contacted Chad or JJ.

Under pressure

I folded

I contacted THE GOOGLE.

I was checking my great nephew’s 5th grade math.

Confident was I

After all I had taught fourth grade

And I thought I was successful

Even if it was back before Columbus discovered America!

REALLY, How hard could it be?

Problem Example (No REALpictures – didn’t think of that either!)

math homework five

Something like this block . . . repeated about 50 million times like it had been stamped onto the paper as a block of problems about 30 times.

It’s been a long time since I’ve seen something that looks like exponents.  I’m pretty sure that I did not see this in my grade 5 math.

What did I need?

Confirmation of this:

math homework

or even this chart:

math homework two

or even this would have been helpful

math homework three

OR even this (all courtesy of THE GOOGLE!)

math homework four

I was brave.

I researched.

I checked.

I googled again.

Checking my great nephew’s math homework.

Worrying that it would be “WRONG”

When it looked pretty darn “RIGHT”!

After all,

I’m NOT just an AUNT;

I’m the World’s BEST Great Aunt!

math homework six

My confidence wanes

I’d hate for the homework to be counted wrong.

So I ask THE GOOGLE one more time

Then I text my niece and nephew,

“If B’s math is wrong, it would be my fault.  He had me check it.  I used a bit of Google and believe it to be all good.”

His mother replied,

“Excellent. I stopped being able to help him with math in second grade when they switched to the common core.”

Math woes . . .

Literacy is so much easier!

How do you solve problems?

How do you know when your problem solving works?

Who do you ask for help?  

What do you do when you don’t “KNOW something”?

Thank you, Betsy, Beth, Deb, Kathleen, Lanny, Lisa, Melanie, and Stacey for this weekly forum and the #SOLSC that runs from March 1 to the 31st. Check out the writers, readers and teachers here.



18 responses

  1. Aren’t we lucky to have The Google? That homework would have stymied me for sure. Sometimes I worry that we aren’t letting kids be kids–where’s the fun and creative play they should be engaging in? Even 5th graders need it.
    When I’m stuck on a problem, I check Google, but I prefer to ask an expert if I can find one.

    1. So funny, Diane that “The Google” does have many answers. The repetitive pattern meant that B would have missed them all if I was wrong – that was the anxiety on my part! Nice that we have lifelines! (Always wonder what we did BEFORE The Google! )

  2. Being out of one’s comfort zone is what I blogged about today too. Great job being a conscientious great aunt! Thank goodness for Google sometimes!

    1. Erika,
      Hope you are enjoying your break!

      It’s great to be challenged. And to feel some pressure. I wonder if we KNOW how much pressure kids put on / take on themselves?

  3. I loved all the visuals you added so we could see your process. You are a super aunt with superpowers!!

    1. Thanks, Sally!
      I often only search THE GOOGLE through the graphics. I have no time to waste on the Blah, Blah, Blah! Interesting . . . that hadn’t registered before your comment! Yay, YOU!

  4. I feel so helpless when it comes to math. This is so like me. I love that you persevered to get it right. You are the best aunt ever, next to me, that is!

    1. Love that perseverance has showed up several times! No quitting, that’s for sure!

      I am the best GREAT aunt – for nine of them! ❤

  5. This is hilarious! My favorite part was all the research and determination you showed to your nephew.

    1. Thanks, Sarah!
      I’m a good rule follower and all about having the homework be “right” but wowza! Is this really 5th grade math?

  6. Phyllis Sutton | Reply

    Fran, as a former teacher of 5th grade math, I could not help but giggle. We all have our comfort zones; it is good for us to stretch ourselves – – even if that does mean math.

    1. Phyllis,
      I have nothing against “stretch”. However, I do wonder why any student would need to do 30 of these.

      Mathematically, the number wrong would have killed my “BEST” status! ❤

  7. Math sure has changed since I was in fifth grade. I would not want to teach math the way a math teacher would not want to teach English. What’s next for fifth grade…calculus?

    1. I think algebra might have been easier. And I was so nerdy that I LOVED geometry proofs! LOL

  8. Wow…math was easier back in the day, I guess…thank goodness that I teach reading and writing! Bravo to you, though.

    1. Tara,
      That’s what I get for being “overconfident”! LOL . . . I was clueless for a bit! 🙂

  9. Way to persevere! Love how you took us through the whole painstaking process of your progress and success.

    1. Thanks, Betsy!
      Sometimes the only choice is painstaking! Not our first choice . . . .

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