Our Unschooling Adventure - which officially started in Lowell in the Fall of 2005 - now continues in Berlin.

Thursday, September 15, 2005

More Math with Supriya

Supriya is after me for some math problems so I ask her how much is 2 times 4. "That's easy - 8." 3 times 4? "Easy - 12." All this is going on in our foyer. Supriya is going back and forth on her skateboard wearing nothing but her undies, and doing these problems in her head!

Then I switch gears, How much is 2 times 3. 6. And 3 times 3? 9. 4 times 3? 12. Her eyes shine. I know exactly what she's thinking. "So 4 times 3 is the same as 3 times 4, isn't it?" "Yeah, just switched around," she agrees. She owns that.

I continue on the times 3 series. 5 times 3? 15. 6 times 3? 18. 7 times 3? 21. I can see it's getting tough for her to keep track of the numbers. Then she flubs it. 8 times 3? 23. I tell her it's 24, and she moves on to playing with Aseem.

I am curious about how she is doing all this math in her head. It turns out she is switching the numbers around (7 times 3 becomes 3 times 7), and adding 7 + 7 + 7 in her head. That's why it becomes harder for her as the numbers grow large. On the other hand if it's done as adding 3 to the previous number (7 times 3 is 6 times 3 PLUS 3) then it does not become more difficult. But that's for another day. For now I will gladly take what she is doing!


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