Sunday, February 07, 2010


Imagine you are a nine year old child. You are used to doing homework because that's what nine year old children do nowadays. Your teacher gives you an assignment.

"I want you to draw an A-Z of mathematical shapes, including both 2D and 3D examples."

So you ring up your mum.

"Mum, we've got to draw an A-Z of mathematical shapes, including both 2D and 3D examples."

So your mum says "don't worry, I'll help you".

So your mum boots up the computer and looks on Google for lists of mathematical shapes. She finds some sites such as A to Z Of Maths Is Fun, Wikipedia's List Of Mathematical Shapes, etc, prints off the shapes such as Acute Triangle, Bezier Curve, Circle, Decagon, etc, says "there you are, love," gives you the examples and you sit down and copy them, making sure the shapes have the right number of sides, the correct angles, etc.

Your mum checks you have copied the shapes properly and you are allowed to go to your bedroom to call your friends.


  1. Now that is what I call education. Not sure who is being educated though?

  2. Sure beats that pile of damp, mouldy encyclopaedias that my mum provided.

  3. Go to your bedroom to call your friends?

    Does this 9-year-old have a phone in its bedroom?

    No. Most probably it has its own mobile.

  4. I'm deeply impressed with a nine year old being capable of copying 26 things out and having a supportive Mum. Where did you find this unusual example?

  5. Mr VVB - It was certainly an education for me.

    Kaz - I love our old family encyclopaedias with their maps of the British Empire and pictures of dodos.

    MJ - Of course. And it'll be "texing".

    Rog - Very true in today's Broken Britain. They need some family values instilled into them.

  6. Homeschooling: they're practically doing it anyway.

  7. I'm still stuck on "A".

  8. I never got passed colours at school.. and that got me an English Literature degree, to be fair.

  9. Ellie - Homeschooling? Does Mummy breastfeed at the same time?

    Istvanski - "A" is for Arse Circle.

    Boz - All that red in Tess of the D'Urbervilles!

  10. Hey this is what we have designed for the next generation. No need to clutter those little minds with a library full of facts and theories when you can goggle it?

    They aren't striving for knowledge or wisdom..just information.

    read it and weep

  12. I'd have been better at maths if there had been some colouring-in. I like colouring-in even today.

  13. Donn - The thinking's all been done. There ain't no thinking to be thunk any more.

    Spammer - No thanks, sweetheart.

    Arabella - I like doing transfers of divers and wrecked ships and fish in underwater scenes. I was unfortunately quite good at maths. To the detriment of my English career.