The essence of mathematics is not to make simple things complicated, but to make complicated things simple. ~S. Gudder
My first math post. Well, actually, it is my seventh math post of the night, but the first one to go public. The others started with very colorful language expressing my fear and nervousness. (And those of you who actually know me, can hear me saying all of that right now!)
A little bit about me. My name is Jen Moffett, and I love math. I am actually addicted to mathematics. I read mathematical journals and books, dream about math, see mathematics in everyday life, and try to get everyone around me to love and appreciate it as much as I do. I have been in education for 20 years. In that time, I have taught elementary and middle school mathematics, worked at the county level as a curriculum specialist, and provided professional development to teachers and parents on a variety of math related ideas and concepts.
Recently, I was given the “gift” of being able to stay home with my littles. (You will hear about them more in later posts, as they are my guinea pigs for math strategies!) Emotionally rewarding, yet mentally I am needing more. I need to be teaching!!! It fulfills me in a way nothing else can. I have pimped my way into some classes through Skype, but it is still not the same. So what to do…what to do…
Yesterday, two public discussions arose about the mathematics children were bringing home, and the frustration (from the parent and child) in doing the homework. Or not doing the homework, because, really, what the heck are they asking my child to do??? These heated debates are not uncommon. Facebook has rant after rant about the struggles parents and children are feeling regarding the “new way” of doing math (Which is not new, but not the time to discuss.). I left both conversations feeling their pain. An idea sparked. I am pretty sure a lightbulb appeared above my head, but it was 1 am and no one was up to prove this.
What if I could support parents (and therefore students) through a blog?
So here it is. I am creating a blog to help you, my fellow parents. It will not be sequential, but I will provide tags so you can search for what you need. When I use great resources, I will reference them so you can check them out. There will be tasks for us to use to explore the difficult concepts, and the research supporting the strategies that may appear different than what we learned in school. Most important, I want to help you understand the “why” behind the mathematical strategies, and for you to gain an appreciation and a love (or a like for you haters) for mathematics.
Happy (math) reading!