Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Which is the Beast in your Homeschool?

Which subject has the greatest power in your home? In ours its clearly the Beast called 'Math'. It is a fearsome beastie indeed, as it, unseen, creeps into my daughter's heart and reduces her to a red-eyed, frustrated, angry, young girl. We are doing algebra right now.  Very simple algebra  and yet she has convinced herself that it's hard.  Until she stops doing that I can't help her.
I moved away from her into another room while she solves six simple questions. I hear sighs, snorts and the occasional sniffle of barely suppressed tears of frustration. Here is a kid who thinks electron configuration is fun and yet the simple act of finding the lcm or lcd of 3 or 4 denominators is a source of frustration.  I am frustrated too because I gave her simplest way to find out that information (courtesy of her math wiz Dad) and can't think of anything easier. Heck, If I understand it, trust me... it's easy!!!  I wish I could help her and I wish I could instill in her a sense of peace. Everything comes to her so easily in terms of academics, this makes a challenge to her all the more frustrating.  But even though I know she is frustrated I piled on 6 more questions as I believe in challenges. Running away from them won't do. Will I do a 'tiger mom' thing on her? Heaven's forbid, no! But those six questions will be answered today.

8 comments:

Arby said...

The biggest challenge in helping someone struggling to learn math is understanding why they do not understand math. I don't know how old she is, but you might try having her keep a math journal. Encourage her to write about math, why she likes it, why she hates it, etc. Even if it is only a sentence a day. I've read about studies that show students who do this perform better in math than people who do not.

Eva said...

Have you tried the "Key to Math" books? They have some for Algebra and are written to the child. How old is your daughter? My son Jonathan has started them this year in grade 7.

Marlis said...

Eva, Missy is 11. She does fairly well but sometimes the gears don't line up and just end up spinning.

Arby, Great idea not just for Math but anything really! thanks!

Marlis said...

sorry, Eva, she will be 11 on Valentine's Day.

Eva said...

With my daughter (who is also 11) it sometimes helps just to take a break or do some more fun math activities or "living math" books.

Marlis said...

Yeah, I do that too sometimes. But this time I sensed she'd do alright if I just moved away (as a natural born control freak I can get kinda intense LOL - working on that). She answered all questions and did fine :)
I have seen that she has less faith in herself than I have. Boy, do I understand that! To this day I fight my inner looser. Very often she'll get upset, cry with frustration and end up surprising herself with her accomplishments. When we decide to have math fun it usually involves baking together. We made a some great chocolate-zucchini bread the other day. Very retro, very yum!

Michelle said...

Thanks for visiting my blog and offering suggestions on collecting urine from the dog. I still haven't done it, I'm afraid. Its too dark in the morning!! Surely, my hubby would do it right? nah, who am I kidding! hahah

I see your in Iowa. My hubby's from Lanesboro, small town near Carroll.

Take care!

Marlis said...

We are in Eastern Iowa by the river.

Hope you can find out what ails your pup. One of my friends has about 9 greyhounds and one has a seizure disorder. No one minds except on other greyhound with a strong predation instinct who will fall upon and attack the seizing greyhound as soon as it happens. other then the seizures the dog is quite healthy.