Friday, February 18, 2011

math homework is a lot like growth...

okay - so i'm sitting here doing my math homework. (i hate math). i've been at it for almost 2 hours now - i think, i'm actually not completely sure, it might be more. Anyhow - i did was doing this weeks homework and i got through the first 20 some exercises relatively quickly and felt really proud of myself then it took a turn for the worse - and i stopped moving forward. i couldn't figure out what i was doing - i kept trying and kept getting it wrong... so i thought i'd take a break - let my brain relax a bit and do the written work from the past few weeks (which i've been avoiding). 

small side note: 
So here's the thing. i'm taking an online math class - no classroom time - so i learn the math as i go through the problems each week. As i get to a problem that i don't know how to answer i go through a process that looks kinda like this - guess, try something different, click on "view an example", guess again, try and find it in the book (which by the way is the wrong edition so nothing is exactly the same), "view example" again, guess again, "help me solve this" guess again - and then i either get it right or skip to the next question. sounds fun right? 

back on track: 
so i'm in my book doing my written homework (which i turn in at the end of the semester, so i havn't been keeping up on) and i am 4 weeks behind. i open my book and realize that i vaguely remember what to do. i recognize the problems and how to complete them. it's kinda cool. then i just get tired of that "kinda cool" feeling after i've done like 100 exercises and i'm not even done with that weeks work.... stupid. 

so - i decided to take a real break and check my email. and as i read an email from a friend and started thinking about life i realized that growth is like math (which doesn't make me like it any better) but it made me laugh a bit. 

math teachers give you tons of problems so that you can try and keep trying until the problems make sense and are easy to complete... life gives you lots of chances to try the same thing over and over until it's simple and easy to complete. 

here's the really funny part (at least to me). Most people do a majority of their growing when they're a kid and they learn how to go about different problems by their parents showing them and them asking questions and trying it out - with the parents right there willing to help walk them through how to do it... well - i didn't have parents helping me learn anything while i was a kid... i kinda just made it up as i went - came to a problem guessed, guessed again, tried to think of what someone else would do ("view an example") guess again, and if then i try and fumble through asking someone what to do ("help me solve this")... i have the same problems come up time and time again (asking for help, allowing room for grace, putting words to my emotions) and then i get frustrated that i'm not even done with that week's stuff... 

but just like math - they start to get easier the more you go over it. 

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