Joseph put together this huge collection of mathematical inspiration, activities, teaching tips, puzzles, and more.
“I am an amusement park enthusiast: I’ve ridden at least 250 different roller coasters at least once each. This includes all the wooden Möbius-strip roller coasters out there. Also all three racing merry-go-rounds. The oldest roller coaster still standing. And I had hoped, this year, to get to the centennial years for the Jackrabbit roller coaster at Kennywood Amusement Park (Pittsburgh) and Jack Rabbit roller coaster at Seabreeze Park (Rochester, New York). Jackrabbit (with spelling variants) used to be a quite popular roller coaster name.
“So plans went awry and it seems unlikely we’ll get to any amusement parks this year. No county fairs or carnivals. We can still go to virtual ones, though. Amusement parks and midway games inspire many mathematical questions.
To keep the books in a series looking like they go together, I use each finished book as the starting template for the next one. That way, all my paragraphs use the same fonts, all headings are the same size, and the titles line up on the cover.
It’s a handy publishing trick that saves time and keeps everything looking right.
My daughter is only eleven, but I’m afraid I’ve ruined her chance of getting into college because she is so far behind in math. We’ve tried tutors, but she still has trouble, and standardized testing puts her three years below grade level. She was a late reader, too, so maybe school just isn’t her thing. What else can I do?
Standardized tests are not placement tests. They cannot tell you at what level your daughter should be studying. They aren’t designed that way. The “placement” they give is vague and general, not indicative of her grade level but rather a way of comparing her performance on that particular test with the performance of other students.
Audrey seemed, for once, at a loss for words. She was thinking about the question.
I try to stay focused on being silent after I ask young children questions, even semi-serious accidental ones. Unlike most adults, they actually take time to think about their answers and that often means waiting for a response, at least if you want an honest answer.
If you’re only looking for the “right” answer, it’s fairly easy to gently badger a child into it, but I’m not interested in doing that.
Only a writer who loves wordplay (my daughter) would name her cat Hypocorism. Hypocorism’s hypocorism is “Puck,” which well suits the little trouble-maker. He loves to climb up to the top of the bookshelf by the window, where we hung a couple of toys for him.
When he was little, he used to climb across the curtain rod to the opposite set of shelves. He still tries it from time to time, though the rod bends under his adult weight. And at least once he took a fall and had to grab for the curtain on his way down. We didn’t see it, but that’s the only explanation we could think of for the huge rip we found later.
One other disadvantage to growing up: The places he loves to sleep have somehow shrunk. After playing for a bit, he stretches out for a nap — and his back hangs dangerously over the edge.
Michael and Nash have been creating and posting new math games with astonishing regularity throughout the pandemic. Their YouTube channel is a great resource for parents who want to play math with elementary-age children.
Today’s entry: Closest to Ten, a quick game for addition and subtraction fluency with a tiny bit of multiplication potential.
And here’s one of my favorites for older players: Factor Triangles, a card game for 2-digit multiplication.
Check out their channel, and have fun playing math with your kids!