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Thursday, January 11, 2007

Blessed are the logical

I'm starting to believe that Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John were not very good at math. Yeah, THAT Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John.

I've been working on multiplication and division word problems with my students, and I've noticed a striking similarity between some of their answer choices and a famous story from the New Testament.

Just imagine if this was a math problem, posed to the young gospel writers:
Jesus has 5 loaves of bread. He wants to split the bread equally among 1000 people who are hungry. How many loaves of bread will each person receive?

Now, if MML&J tackled this problem the way many of MY students would, they would multiply 5 times 1000 and get 5000.
Each person will receive 5000 loaves of bread.

No wonder everyone ate to their fill and there was a multitude still left over!

In the case of the Gospel story, this is referred to as a miracle, and I happen to believe in its veracity. Not so much with my kids.

On the test I gave today, one question was, "Mrs. M. had 30 pieces of candy. She wants to give the same amount of candy to 10 students. How many pieces of candy will each student get?”

Every time I saw an answer of 300 (or even 30, from my just plain confused kids), I kept wanting to ask, "So you think this is a loaves and fishes situation?"

Oh well, at least I know what I'll be concentrating even harder on next week.


Airam said...

At least they're not all yelling cock at you!

Anonymous said...

Yes, but then you'd be in trouble for talking about the Bible in school.