Frustrated Dad Writes Epic Response to Kid's Common Core Math (PHOTO)

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If you've found yourself banging your head against the wall or feeling dumb as a post upon trying to help your kid with his Common Core math homework -- well, you're not alone. But just in case you think it's YOU and other people who are like YOU (i.e., who suck at math), then you might feel better to know that even a dad who has an advanced engineering degree can't figure out Common Core math!

When the dad received homework (presumably belonging to his child) to solve why "Jack" got his subtraction problem wrong, dad took one look at the convoluted mess that looks like scribblings of black rainbows and wrote:

That's right, even someone who has been trained in advanced mathematics, and who uses it on a regular basis in his career, can't figure out this CC mumbo jumbo. What is that saying?!

He then goes on to solve the math problem in under five seconds by using the standard approach.

I'm not one of those people who thinks that the "old way" is always best. Learning and teaching should be open-ended and always have room for progress and improvement.

But when an engineer can't figure out elementary school math homework -- that's a problem.

Do you understand your child's math homework? Where do you turn for help?


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Frost... FrostyMelted

Why is he doing his kid's homework? Frustrated Parent seems rather lazy since he's not open to learning new material. Reminds me of old people who refuse to learn computers. Not impressed. 

Note: For the idiots who populate this website, this is not an endorsement of Common Core. I'm not a fan. However, I'm not opposed to new things or new technology. 

Manth... Manthie717

If this is how they are teaching math nowadays it's no wonder the kids are so confused. I know a "girl" that can't even make change for a $5 bill. Whatever happened to the "old fashion" way of solving math problems? If they taught math like this when I was in school I probably wouldn't have excelled as well as I did, and I love math. I can see the frustration on the part of the parent very clearly, and I feel sorry for all the kids in the classroom that have to learn to do math this way.

the4m... the4mutts

Lmfao!!! That's the greatest response EVER!

As for my kids, and their homework, I am grateful to be home schooling. The learning coach books give you several different ways to teach your kids, and thankfully, mine know the simplest ways. I haven't had a single problem with their work since I started home schooling.

sylph... sylph_ironlight

I stared at this a few days ago trying to figure out what the heck the problem was. Took me a good 10 minutes to figure out why 'Jack' got the problem wrong and couldn't understand why they were teaching kids to solve math problems like this.

Apparently, Jack was supposed to find the answer (111) by starting at 427, then subtracting 100, 100, 100, 10, 1, 1, 1, 1, 1, 1 using the line to mark each group. Jack only subtracted 306, not 316. But what an asinine way of getting to the answer. I understand that a lot of kids learn visually, but this just seems ridiculous.

Frost... FrostyMelted

@Manthie717 - Kids haven't been able to make change for the 20 years that I've owned a business. I blame the computer and poor breeding practices. Why we let dumb people reproduce is beyond me. Nevertheless, it's not the fault of the new math as the problem has existed long before the emergence of new math. Frankly, I suspect new math emerged as a way to combat (teach) all the imbeciles who now populate our society.

Felip... FelipesMom

This IS NOT COMMON CORE MATH. The specific approaches being used, the specific ways teachers are telling their kids to solve problems, etc etc etc, ARE NOT COMMON CORE. The Common Core does NOT tell teachers how to teach, it just outlines the things we need kids to understand. The relevant standard for this assignment says only "Fluently add and subtract within 1000 using strategies and algorithms based on place value, properties of operations, and/or the relationship between addition and subtraction." (CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.3.NBT.A.2) The Common Core does NOT say HOW teachers get their kids to meet the standards.

Jammi... Jammie209

I wanted to jump up & down when my school told us at the beginning of the year to do whatever works with our children. I always excelled in math but couldn't help my kids with their homework. Extremely frustrating!

nonmember avatar Candice

@Sylph, I am dyscalculic (I have what is essentially the mathematical equivalent of dyslexia), and that's a method that I would use to solve that problem. That's wrong, in my opinion. Children shouldn't be learning how to solve equations the way that someone with a learning disability would.

fave82 fave82

Kids should be able to learn math whatever way is best for them. They should show them the standard way and show them other options... Whatever way the kid takes to, as long as they can do problems and get the right answer, should be acceptable. Forcing them one way or the other is counter productive.

nonmember avatar ActualEngineer

I hope this engineer isn't building anything that could put a person in danger. This is not difficult to figure out. It's demonstrating a way to subtract that's similar to how you might do it without pen and paper. That's pretty darn useful. The old fashioned way that this parent uses is efficient when you have pen and paper and can see what you're doing, but difficult to use for head calculations.

Also, and I would hope that this engineer would appreciate this, but a lot of the learning that happens in STEM is not something you will directly apply or be evaluated on in the real world. The point of all that math is to increase your problem solving sophistication so that you can recognize that you might know/remember a way to a solution. In engineering we deal with constraints, and sometimes the one way you know how to solve the problem won't work because of those constraints. Having multiple avenues to the solution is extremely valuable.

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