Old Dogs, New Math

Thanks to the generosity of The Experiment, a nonfiction publisher in New York City, I have one copy of Old Dogs, New Math: Homework Help for Puzzled Parents to give away, which will be mailed directly to the winner AT A U.S. ADDRESS.

You can see the publisher’s description of the book and read an excerpt here.

They also sent me a review copy, which I hope to write a blog post about sometime soon — though with our schedule this semester, I can make no promises. But from a quick flip through the book, I’ll give it a definite thumbs-up!

How to Enter the Giveaway

Remember, the book must be mailed to a U.S. address. If you live in the U.S., you have two ways to enter the contest:

  1. Leave a comment on this post answering the question: What part of math do you find the hardest to understand or to explain to your children?
  2. Post about the contest on your own blog (or on a homeschooling or parenting forum, if you don’t have a blog), then come here and add a comment with the link to your post.

You may do both, to double your chances — but please make sure your link is in a separate comment from your answer to the question, or I may forget to count it separately.

I will accept entries for a week and a half, through Friday, October 8th Monday, October 11th. (Extended due to family issues that made the weekend too busy!) After that, I will count up all the entries (numbered in order of their appearance in the comment section) and go to RANDOM.ORG to generate the winning number. I will email the winner to get your address, which I’ll then pass on to the publisher so they can send you your book.


And the winner is . . . Lakshmi. Congratulations!

Thank you to everyone who participated in the giveaway. I enjoyed reading your comments, and you’ve given me several ideas for future blog posts.

Cousin Sam’s 15 Challenge

Uncle Will drove in from the tree farm to drop off Alex’s cousin, Sam, so he could go to the Homeschool Math Carnival.

“Hey, Sam,” Alex said. “What’s in the sack?”

Sam smiled. “A secret puzzle.”

“Aw, c’mon,” Leon whined. “We’ll be busy with our own games at the carnival. Can’t you show us now?”

Continue reading Cousin Sam’s 15 Challenge

Math Storytelling Day

[Photo and story by Nick Johnson.]

Celebrate Math Storytelling Day by making up and sharing math stories. Everyone loves a story, so this is a great way to motivate your children to play around with math. What might a math story involve? Patterns, logic, history, puzzles, relationships, fictional characters, … and yes, even numbers.

What story will you tell?

Measure the Earth: Useful Links

To find the latitude of your position:

To convert your latitude to a distance measurement:

  • GPS Latitude and Longitude Distance Calculator
    Enter your latitude, but enter 0 (zero) for longitude. Then enter 0 for both latitude and longitude for the equator. Click to calculate your distance to the equator in meters, km, feet, or miles.

[I will also add these to the original post.]

Quotable: Bad at Math

There’s a tendency for adults to label the math that they can do (such as identifying patterns, choosing between competing offers in a supermarket, and challenging statistics published by the government) as “common sense” and labeling everything they can’t do as “math” — so that being bad at math becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy.

Rob Eastaway, Mike Askew
Old Dogs, New Math: Homework Help for Puzzled Parents

Still a couple of slots left in Sol’s book giveaway. I’ll be hosting a giveaway soon, too — so watch this spot!

Math Project: Measure the Earth

Tomorrow, September 23, is the equinox — when night and day are equally balanced (or would be, if the sun appeared as a point, rather than a disc). If we lived on the equator, the sun would appear directly overhead at noon and would cast no shadow. Therefore, it’s a great day to perform Eratosthenes’ experiment of measuring the earth:

Continue reading Math Project: Measure the Earth

Alexandria Jones and the Mathematical Carnival

Alexandria JonesMaria Jones hung up the phone and collapsed at the kitchen table. She buried her head in her hands and groaned. Alex looked up from her game of Solitaire.

“Let me guess,” she said. “Can’t-Say-No Syndrome, again?”

Mrs. Jones nodded. “This time I volunteered to plan an activity for next month’s homeschool group meeting.”

Leon wandered in and pulled an apple from the fruit bowl. “Ha!” he said. “She means she volunteered us to plan an activity, right?”

Mrs. Jones smiled. “That’s my motto: When in doubt, delegate!”

Continue reading Alexandria Jones and the Mathematical Carnival

Math Teachers at Play #30 via JD2718

Check out the mathy blog entries in this month’s Math Teachers at Play blog carnival, hosted by Jonathan at jd2718. Topics range from preschool to high school, including songs, games and much more. Fun!

Welcome to the September 17, 2010 edition of math teachers at play. This is MTaP #30. This MTaP may look a little different. There is no theme weaving its way through and unifying the sections. We are not opening with a discussion of the number 30 (no matter how many cool things we could have come up with), and the sections are, um, different. It has occurred to some of us that the experience a student has in mathematics may differ greatly from p … Read More

via JD2718

Pirate Treasure: Free Elementary Math

CurrClick is running a Talk Like a Pirate Sale through Wednesday, October 22, and they hid 20 virtual treasure chests around their website — each with a free e-book inside. I haven’t found them all, but here are a couple of preschool and early-elementary treats:

Who knows what else may be hiding in those CurrClick treasure chests? Have fun exploring!

Sept-Oct 2010 Math Calendars

As I was preparing for Wednesday’s Homeschool Math Club Games & Activities meeting, I remembered my old math calendars and thought, that would be a fun activity to offer. So I pulled up the files and discovered that the days of the week matched perfectly. What a cool coincidence!

So in case you missed the math calendars last year, or in case it’s been long enough that your children have forgotten, here are the “new” versions:


Umm Ahmad created an easier version for young students:

Continue reading Sept-Oct 2010 Math Calendars