Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Math and Folk Songs, or Old Joe Clark's House

Yesterday morning Cornflower and I were studying integers: graphing coordinates to form a shape, then stretching, enlarging or reducing the shape by multiplying the original coordinates in different ways.

She had to make a new graph each time, which she found tedious.

She had just began to grumble when she discovered the shape she was forming was Joe Clark's house.

Old Joe Clark, he had a house
Eighteen stories high
And every story in that house
Was filled with apple pie.

(Lyrics adapted to fit Cornflower's graph and preferences.)

All she needed was to remember a favorite folk song and graphing became fun.  I call that true liberal arts education.  =)

(I guess I should point out that I did not make the connection for her.  I wasn't sitting at her elbow saying, "But look!  It's Joe Clark's house!"  I also did not contrive lessons containing folk songs having to do with integers and geometry.  She learned that song through her violin lessons and our folk singing at home.  It just happened to connect to her math today.)

Update 6/29:  Today, after a frustrating lesson on factoring, she exclaimed, "O, how full of briars is this working-day world!"  This is a quote from Shakespeare's As You Like It, and highly appropriate, I thought.

1 comment:

JCrew Mama said...

Well, you know you've done something right when your kids are walking around quoting Shakespeare! ;)