I Fought With My 7-Year Old Over Common Core Math
To say that math homework was a struggle last night is a huge understatement. My son and I were so frustrated that we barely made it through one page. There was crying involved and I can't say that it was all him.
My son is 7 years old and is an extremely creative thinker. He's imaginative, extremely bright and tends to do well in school. Until we met common core math.
I'm looking for someone to explain this to me.
According to CoreStandards.org:
The Common Core is a set of high-quality academic standards in mathematics and English language arts/literacy (ELA). These learning goals outline what a student should know and be able to do at the end of each grade. The standards were created to ensure that all students graduate from high school with the skills and knowledge necessary to succeed in college, career, and life, regardless of where they live. Forty-two states, the District of Columbia, four territories, and the Department of Defense Education Activity (DoDEA) have voluntarily adopted and are moving forward with the Common Core.
Regardless of the definition, I see it as a divide between my son and myself. I respect his way of learning and I would love for him to show me or guide me through it so I can help. He can't.
Last night, we were sitting in the kitchen working on a 3-digit subtraction problem. It required "borrowing" numbers. What I know to do is stack the three numbers on top of each other, borrow from the number to the left and so on until I have my answer. My method threw my son for an absolute loop. That's not how he does it. However, he doesn't remember exactly how he does it but he knows he "borrows from next door". At least we had that in common. There's no number stacking, instead they are side-by-side, a number line is used or some boxes and tallies are used. I'm not sure if this is actually what's supposed to happen but once he started showing me things, I turned into a confused student and he a teacher faking like he knew what he was teaching.
It was a mess.
What now? How do I help him?