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Wednesday, February 22, 2012

I Don't Get What it is You Don't Get.

Student: Can you walk me through this problem because I don't understand anything we did today.

Me:  Okay, what do you think you should do first?

Student: Um, the exponent.

Me:  Okay, do that.

Student: Okay, now what do I do?

Me:  Well, you have subtraction and division, which one do you do first?

Student:  Division.

Me:  Okay, so do the division.

Student:  What do you mean?

Me:  Do the division part of the problem.  Divide those two numbers.

Student:  I don't know what you're saying.

Me:  Take those two numbers and divide them.
Student:  I don’t get it.
Me:  Take this number and divide it by this number.
Student: So, I subtract them?
Me:  No, you divide them.  See, there is a division sign which means divide.
Student:  Why wouldn’t I subtract?
Me:  The problem has a division sign.  It’s telling you to divide.  Why would you subtract when there’s a division sign?
Student: Oh, so I divide?
Me:  Yes.  Take this number and divide it by this number.
Student:  I don't get it.

No, really, teaching math is awesome!


  1. Oh, GOD, this makes my head explode. Dammit, why does everyone have to be so stupid?!?!

  2. At what point did you start bashing your head on the desk? Teachers are amazing. Students suck.

  3. So your student never learned that dividing is figuring out 'how many times a number goes into another number'?!