Monday, October 22, 2012

The Correct Answer Is WTF: I've been trying not to help my son so much with his college math homework, and today he did almost all the problems in his computerized lesson independently. But there was one that, hoo boy, has just about been the death of us all. It was a three-part story problem -- and right there, I want to just weep -- but my guy went through all the trouble of converting mixed numbers to fractions and multiplying and reducing and converting and LCMing and subtracting, every step right, except the computer says the answer's wrong. He does it again, I do it again, we do it again, my husband comes home from work and does it a couple times, and there's a different wrong answer each time. At this point, the kid's hysterical and the grown-ups can't let it go -- it's personal now, you know? One wrong answer's not gonna scuttle his grade, but this is a remedial class for kids who scored lowest on the entrance exam and need extra support. Is it helpful to have them do a problem that brings a whole family to its knees? Have mercy!

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