Girl2, is working hard in her last year of primary school, preparing for the selection process that forms part of the transfer to secondary school. It’s a whole family event.
Spurs Fan helps her with practise tests at the weekend, and with maths homework problems. I can do some of the maths, but not much- another fun feature of ME is the inability to manage numbers beyond very simple calculations. A page of numbers is simply a page of meaningless squiggles that I am unable to process.
I get the words: spellings, vocabulary, maths language. We can spend hours on the difference between ‘severe’ and ‘denounce’, ‘reluctant’ and ‘deficient’. ‘Immortal’ is announced with a Fame style pose, in the hope that ridiculousness and laughter will aid learning. Simply looking at unfamiliar words doesn’t do it for any of us.
The other day, my afternoon nap turned into a maths session. “Can you help me with my triangular numbers?” Triangular numbers? What on god’s earth are triangular numbers? I’ve heard of square numbers and cubed numbers, but I’ve gone through many years at school without ever having heard of triangular numbers. Do I need to know about them? Will they make my life comprehensible?
So Girl2 demonstrated her understanding of these things by explaining them to me, telling me how to work them out and rattling off sequences, forwards and backwards. Really, I did help…
Other new words she’s teaching me: vertices, factors and tessellation. Maths has a very different language than it had in the 1970s.
My credit card bill just arrived. Do you think it’ll make sense now that I know about vertices?