Elementary Homework Isn't So Elementary After All

Another mental block moment...Yesterday I was helping my daughter with her math homework and I found myself feeling dumb again. This week, she is learning how to measure the circumference and diameter of a circle, area of a rectangle and metric conversion. If my recollection is correct, I believe I learned how to measure the circumference of a circle using the formula 3.14 in middle school. My daughter is in third grade and she's learning this now. I'm horrible in math so I don't think I would be able to help her much when she enters middle school. By then, maybe she'll be learning algebra in sixth grade.

As I was staring at my daughter's homework, I realized my power to recollect math formula is failing. I only remember = 3.14 and nothing else. After googling "circumference formula" online, I attempted to explain to my daughter what "circumference = π × diameter" means . She gave me this weird confused look and said, "My teacher didn't use that". I asked my daughter how did the teacher calculate the circumference and she said "the teacher said to take the diameter and times 3". I read the assignment quarter paragraph introduction and to my surprise, rather than using = 3.14, a new concept of "power of three" is now used to find the circumference. My daughter's homework was to find five objects, measure the diameter, and calculate the circumference of each object. To do so, she multiplied the diameter by 3 to get the circumference.

I think math concepts are slowly evolving. I know for sure I'm going to have a hard time helping my daughter with her math homework down the road. Who would have thought elementary math can be so challenging!


Mel Avila Alarilla said...

You can always review her math book to familiarize yourself again with math concepts. It is really understandable that we tend to forget math lessons and formulas since we were out of college a long time ago. You can probably buy a refresher book on math so that you can help your daughter with her math assignments. Thanks for the post. God bless you always.

Rose Belle said...

@Mel: The school approach is no book only worksheets. I wish there's a math book for my daughter to take home so I can review the assignment with her rather than relying on the internet. I like the higher academic bar imposed on students..just tough on the parents but as parents, we always want the best for our kids even if it means suffering for us. Thanks for stopping by!