Sunday, October 30, 2011

Circling In

So this is how Saturday's post began...

Started the day in bed with Trevy laughing uproariously at antics in The Wind in the Willows.  :)
A fine, fine beginning.

An' there was somethin' there this morning about Kipper the dog and lollipops.

Got the book that I'm verrrra excited about... Nomad Press asked me to give them my three top choices of books I'd like to review, and they'd send me one.... my first choice was Amazing Math : Projects You Can Build Yourself and that's the one I received today.  woohoo!!  (It wasn't at my library, so I'm happy to get a free copy!)

Cookies.  (Didn't bake them all last night, as I made a double-batch.  ' Thinkin', see. Eric can't eat a double-batch in one day!)

The Pyramind Game (codename for Totally Tut, you may remember.)

Start supper.  (Crockpot.)

Store run!
Second time to send the babes in alone.  I'm rather gettin' the hang of that.  Funny that Trev came out waving the receipt in one hand and change in the other, and Little Madd was hauling two gallons of milk.  :)

Ratatouille (pc game).

Start those bread bowls for dinner.

Better get on those cinnamon rolls that I've been meaning to make for over a week, now, too.....

Zoo Tycoon....

.  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .

So there it is, though I didn't finish it. 

Early on in the day, I was looking at my shiny new Amazing Math book.  Amazingly enough, one of the first two projects is making a Sorobon--a Japanese abacus.  That's amazing because I had mentioned to my friend Jessica about a week ago that if she found books or sparkly things to play on an abacus, to please let me know, that I had been thinking about that for years.
The other of the two projects was learning base-five, or counting in different numeral systems.  Which I quickly perused, and wasn't really understanding (I have no memory of learning different number based systems in my life, excepting roman numerals, but that wasn't mathematics), but thought, well, I'll read this again, so I can understand it and not be lost when I read it with Trev....
Then lo and behold, this morning happens.

First thing this morning, while my family still slept I stumbled upon Binary Arithmetic.  Taught Socratically to third graders.  Not only was I able to definitely understand binary arithmetic (I should hope so, as this was for young children, though he did say that it was often a difficult thing for adults to grasp) but I learned that calculators and computers work by firing electricity through circuits via this method, and then they interpret this code back into our numerals and numbers.  Aaaah!  Which is why computer code is a bunch of square zeroes and straight lines that look like " I  "!!  Dang!  How cool is that?!?  I had no idea.  (No software engineers or programmers living in this house, friends.)

Put cinnamon rolls in the oven.

So I was thinking I had this thing in the bag (heh) so I wrote out numbers up to thirty (to make myself a chart), and their binary equivalent.  Multiplication?  Easy.  Addition?  Easy.  Subtraction?  Easy.
Wait.  'Til I got to twenty-eight minus thirteen.  aka, 11100 - 1101.  Uh... wait.  :)  Yeah.  Not so smart after all, is she???
But this is the land of opportunity, this internet we have, and I can just do a search for Binary Subtraction.  And be led here.
And I can feel a little bit better about my taxed brain because presumably (as they're talking math and computer sciences) they're not talking to third graders.  ' Course, it could be that I am embarrassingly wrong, and these things are taught to third or fourth graders.  We did not have computer science classes in 1977 when I was nine, friends!
Okay.  Wait.  What?  I need real problems.  So I go herePhew-- It's a college.  Not a preschool.  :)
Aaaaah... of course.  I'm still thinking borrowing means "10" or "9", then got rid of that "9" in my head, but wasn't sure what to do... then remembered/saw that this "10" was "2".  Aha!  Got it.  Maybe....
Let's try 11100 - 1101 again.

Yes!!  I've got it!
Can move on with my life.
Isn't it so awesome the way these little inquiring/learning trails work???

Cinnamon rolls are out of the oven...
and can now get back to Amazing Math with confidence.  :)

On to the living, then!


  1. Fun!

    My husband was a computer engineering major/math minor and is a freakin' genius with number. So when my artsy fartsy brain encounters all of these things that I think, ooooh, wow, cool, new to me my husband says something like he learned it in 3rd grade. I then remind him my IQ is as high as his is, and ask him who the singer for the B-52's is or how Van Gogh died, and he shuts up. Bwahahhahahhahah! (just being silly - love finding new math stuff for boys too - so cool, and we all enjoy it)!

  2. Yup! :)
    Cool, too, that other than being excited about discovering neato things/knowledge, our enthusiasm is a great demonstration of natural inquisitiveness and autodidactic learning.

  3. But wait, you didn't learn it in school? or from a teacher? Wait??? You have natural curiosity! How the heck did that happen :P

  4. I know!
    Should I check into a school, so I can learn, do you think???

  5. i'm with Denise o nthis one. i always pass math stuff on to my husband. he's a whiz with numbers and such.

    sounds like a great day. how did the cinnamon rolls turn out? :)

  6. So fun.

    I was awful at math in school because of how it was taught - goodness, I thought I was so stupid for years. Now that I am out of that environment numbers come a bit easier for me because I can arrive at my answer in my own unique way...not in a way that is taught.

    I love the sound of this book. Off to look it up. AND...the last link didn't work for me - the college one. Can you send it to me on FB or via email? xoxo

  7. Oh, Debbie, I didn't put in a proper link! It's fixed, now.


Thanks so much for sharing your thoughts!