"Security is mostly a superstition. It does not exist in nature, nor do the children of men as a whole experience it. Avoiding danger is no safer in the long run than outright exposure. Life is either a daring adventure, or nothing. " -Helen Keller

Monday, March 15, 2010

Evil Mom Strikes Thrice

Did you know I was being mean and horrible because I wouldn't let him use the calculator to figure out percent equations during our math lesson today? Well, according to Marty I was. See, he had problems like...
Julius writes novels and receives 12% of the price of each book sold in royalties. To the nearest cent, find the royalty Julius receives on a book price of $7.99.

The equation used to solve these problems is simple... n = % x total or, in this case, royalty = .12 x $7.99
Those are not that hard but, from all the bitching and whining and moaning I got, you would have thought I was torturing him.

When he finally accepted I wasn't going to let him use it, this ensued...
MBMS: But, why did we even buy it?
EM: Because the school required it.
MBMS: They would have at least let me use it to check the work. Why can't I do that here?
EM: I don't know how they would have used the calculator in school. I'm not a teacher there. I am your teacher here. Writing everything out drills the facts into your head. Checking your work by hand does the same. DO YOUR WORK!
MBMS: But, Mooooooooom, if I make a mistake in one and I don't check it with the calculator then I won't know it's wrong and I'll make the same mistake on other ones.
EM: How can you think that? A multiplication mistake in one does not guarantee a multiplication mistake in the other problems. If you are having problems with the formula, a calculator won't catch that.

OMG, you wouldn't believe the pouting, the huffing, the puffing, and the moaning that followed. I came so close to saying we weren't allowed to use calculators in math class when I was younger, you don't need it either.

Then, EM followed it up by refusing to allow MBMS to print out a 6+ page walk through for a video game. I mean, my god, EM let him do it in the past. How dare she change her mind. I told him that if he wished to sit in front of a glowing screen, he could at least use his own brain power to figure out the game. I said that all having a walk through proved was that he could follow someone else's instructions. Of course, he continued to argue so I finally snapped and said he had a choice between almost non-existent glowing screen time with a walk through or more time without a walk through.

Then, MBMS argues with me about what he would eat for lunch. All he wanted was "rice with sauce. That's the only thing that sounds good." But damn, EM said no again. MBMS could not have just rice and sauce. EM insisted he have something else to help balance his diet...and, miracle of miracles, MBMS was in a much better mood after he ate the other things that EM insisted on him having. He went from being an argumentative pain in the ass to saying "You know mom, I think I was so grouchy just because I was hungry."

ARRRRRRGGGGGGGHHHHHHHH...maybe on days like today, I can video tape the days and sell the DVDs as the best source of no-hormonal birth control available.

EM = eeeeeevil mom
MBMS = much beleaguered middle schooler


doughmesstic said...

And now, you just sewed it right up for me - homeschooling is OUT.

(cause, I'm with the kid - I'd want to check my work with the calculator, too. And, it is handy to know how to use a calculator. For when you become 35 and aggravated at "that crazy new math". Or something. :0)

Kristin said...

LOL Susan...once he proves to me he can figure it out without the calculator, then he can take that short cut.

Baby On Mind said...

That is too funny! I have so much to look forward to =)

Jenn said...

I majored in math and did a lot of math tutoring over the years- and I really, really support you limiting the use of calculators until the kids have proved that they understand the mechanics of problem solving. It's all about the process! After they get the concept it isn't a problem- in fact it can help them understand if they aren't getting bogged down with long division and stuff. But not until later!

*Tanyetta* said...

I am with Marty! LOL

***The equation used to solve these problems is simple..***

Emma said...

Most of my arguments with Christopher (11yo) are a direct result of hunger. He's a scrawny little thing who doesn't eat nearly as much as I would like. The moment his stomach is empty he becomes a very cranky young man; feed him and everything is fine again.

Mrs. Gamgee said...

Don't you just love those moments of clarity that kids have? When they realize how wacky they were being?

My mom always said that a kid loses access to their brain at age 12, and it doesn't come back until they're 21... but it can't come back all at once, because that would be humiliating and painful.

Quiet Dreams said...

You're so MEAN!!!! (cue evil laugh--hahahahahaha)

I have to say I kind of get the same way your beleaguered middle schooler gets when I need to eat, as well. And for this reason, I have MUCH respect for those who can homeschool those cranky kids.

Nina said...

You are an Evil Mom...and you are to be admired! My stepson told me once he was bored. I said, in my most surprised tone of voice, "Bored? Why didn't you tell me? I've got all KINDS of stuff for you to do!" I had him sweeping, and mopping, and loading the dishwasher, and dusting...*contented sigh* We evil moms must stick together. I'm looking forward to when Fletcher gets big enough to wield a broom. I'm gonna have sooooo much free time. Why else do you have kids, anyway? ;)

Beautiful Mess said...

AHAHAHAHA!!!! Oh that poor child! How DARE you give him the opportunity to LEARN! Oh the horror! ;o)

niobe said...

Too funny. And my kid used to call me MMITW. Pronounced Mitt-wuh. Short for the Meanest Mom in the World.

MrsSpock said...

I am actually happy to know how to do percentages in my head every time we go to a restaurant and I have to leave an appropriate tip. It's a good life skill to have says the Evil Mrs Spock.

battynurse said...

I never got to use calculators in school either. At least not until college.
You are a strong woman to do all this and keep your sense of humor intact.