## The Difference Between Two Points

How does one choose Algebra over Paddling? We’ve endured the hardest rain season I’ve ever experienced. Mud. Wet. Cold. Wet. Mud. It’s gone on since the middle of November. So when one looks outside and sees a calm, flat, wind and rain free lake –you’d think I’d grab a paddle.

Instead we put on a DVD of Math U See with Mr. Demme showing us how to find the difference between two points when we don’t have a graph to draw it out.  Linear Graphing has never been a strong point of mine. I completely gave up even trying when Nathan went through it. I think my weakness then was my lack of surety of positives and negatives. I didn’t understand how the for box grid laid out. How the points could be plotted.

It stemmed from using Teaching Textbooks with him in Pre-Algebra. I’m not against TT – it worked wonders for Nate, but left me handicapped as a teacher. By the time 8th grade came around, I was tired of math and let him use the tutors. For Jon – I took the Math U See Pre-Algebra with him, and now I’m taking Algebra 1 along side. He enjoys learning together, more than alone with a workbook.

I’d love to just skip past any graphing. I think we only have a couple of more lessons. I do see how MUS builds each week, each skill, each problem to be solved on the one before. It might take us a calendar year to get through this program, but I believe, at the end, we’ll both have a solid understanding of algebraic equations.

And thankfully, at the end of the day’s lessons – the lake still looked like this, and I did get to paddle with a friend.