Math education for dummies



One of the things wrong with modern education is that kids don’t learn math.  This can be verified in almost any retail establishment, using this simple and fun game: Find a young sales associate that looks like he or she is under 21.  (Disclaimer: male sales associates are easier to find, as all female sales associates look 23.)  Purchase an item which costs $4.33, and hand the sales associate a five-dollar bill and eight pennies.  The game is scored as follows:

  • Score two points if he gives you the wrong change.
  • Score one point if he gives you back the 8 pennies, and then gives you the correct change.
  • Score one point if he uses a calculator at any point.
  • Score zero points if he hands you back 3 quarters.
  • Lose a point if he does this without relying on the cash register readout.

This is an easy problem to correct.  Simply find a school-age child.  Wait for them to say “I hate math” or “When am I ever going to use this?”  Then get an indelible marker and write across the child’s forehead “CHEAT ME!”

(Disclaimer 1: If the child is already out of school, it is OK to use a tattoo.)

(Disclaimer 2: This is best done to other people’s children, unless you want your children to live with you forever.)

Hide and/or Seek

This is the last of my stories about babysitting Christopher, my friend’s 5-year old.  It is also my favorite.

One evening, after having a particularly tiring day at work, I was watching Christopher, and he decided we were going to play hide-and-seek.  All I wanted to do was sit and read the paper, but because Christopher is so entertaining, and so cute, I knuckled under.  Christopher then began to explain the rules of the game to me.

Christopher decided he was going to hide.  So he proceeded to tell me to close my eyes and count to a hundred.  (Sometimes it was a million, sometimes 48.  Christopher didn’t care.)  It didn’t matter, because once Christopher was hidden, he would yell out “Ready or not, here I come!”, which was my signal to stop counting and come find him. Continue reading