My seven year old was in the shower, I was washing her hair.
“Mommy, did you know that sometimes one plus one isn’t two?” My heart sank to my stomach. Talk about a homeschool fail.
I responded as neutrally as I could, “Is that so?” My thoughts quickly turned to all the math material I have onboard and how I could have taught something so basic so very very wrong. This was something that had to be corrected, and quickly.
“Yes, in dropland one plus another one is a bigger one.” She was obviously pleased with herself.
Wanting to get to the bottom of my epic homeschool fail, I pressed further. “I don’t know about dropland. Can you tell me about that?”
My daughter pointed to the water droplets that remained on the shower wall. “Look Mommy,” she said. She proceeded to touch one, causing it to zoom down the wall until it joined another drop. “See? In dropland, one drop plus another drop makes a bigger drop!”
“Oh,” I responded. “So in our land one plus one is ALWAYS two, but in dropland one plus one is a bigger one?”
Triumphantly, she proclaimed, “YES!”
I was initially quite relieved, but then realized the significance of this conversation. That’s pretty deep thinking. We never know what is going on in our kids’ heads, but if we take the time to listen and ask probing questions, we are likely to end up with something noteworthy.