It makes me sad when people say that they hate math. It really does. But I get it. I do. I think, though, that if people were taught math properly, they wouldn’t hate it. I think people are taught to hate math. Math is in everything. It’s actually one of the reasons we homeschool. We actually homeschool because math is beautiful. I don’t think I can convince you in one post, but I am going to preach it anyway.
It’s more than just beauty, it’s understanding. It’s thinking. It’s problem solving. It’s a skill. It’s being able to look at a problem and use the knowledge that you have to solve it. It can be any problem in the world! For example, my daughter was being asked a question that she didn’t understand. She was able to look at the question, find the parts of it that she did understand, explain those to herself, define the words that she didn’t understand and put them into context, and finally arrive at an understanding of the question. I personally believe that is more important than getting the answer right (which she did). There is so much easiness in the world that I don’t think there is a real thirst for knowledge like there once was for many people. The knowledge that we have now is something people used to seek and fight to find. Some literally sacrificed all they had, including their lives, to get it. We Google it. I want my children to have an insatiable hunger for understanding.
Math teaches them this. It not only gives them understanding, but it gives them the tools to find it. One of my favorite things about math is that you always have to have a reason. You cannot just do something for no reason. Guessing isn’t allowed. 🙂 Think! I don’t tell my children they are wrong or right. I ask them questions so that they can explain their process to me. When they are wrong, they figure it out. It’s not always an easy process. I don’t want to make it sound like it is. It is, however, always worth it to see them smile at the end. Always.
This is why I love math. It works in every aspect of life. Every. Single. One. Math is everywhere. Patterns are everywhere. Logic and reason are needed everywhere. Problem solving is needed everywhere. You have to know why you did something, why you made a choice, or you will be like water all your life – taking the path of least resistance, never questioning. Math teaches us to know our minds, to be acquainted with the world and the way it works, to understand why.
Math is beautiful. It really is. And I am so thankful for all the people who have helped to create all the great resources that make it easy for me to teach my family math in such a holistic way. Don’t give up. Find the beauty. Find the why.
Take It, and Be Thankful