Much to my relief, it turned out that it wasn’t me who had to watch out for our son armed with Adam Spencer’s: Big Book of Numbers.
It was his teachers.
Nothing gives a kid more joy than finding out something, anything their teacher doesn’t know… no matter how remote, obscure or incredibly difficult it might be!!
After all, teachers know everything and unlike the rest of us mere mortals, they even have eyes in the back of their heads. (My son’s Kindergarten teacher truly had him convinced!)
Anyway, in a scene reminiscent of a scene snatched straight out of an Andy Griffith’s book (see notes), my son lifted an equation from the Big Book of Numbers and approached his teacher.
Unfortunately for her, her didn’t ask her about how you cut a pizza in 29 pieces with only 7 cuts.
He’d used that one up on Adam’s visit at the school (see previous post: https://beyondtheflow.wordpress.com/2015/08/05/the-journey-of-a-thousand-books-sets-sail/).
Instead, referring to Sierpinski numbers, he asked her: 78,557 x 2 11 + 1=?
When she, not unsurprisingly, didn’t know that off the top of her head, he asked another teacher.
He didn’t know either.
Boy was he excited! That was almost better than winning Lotto!
By the way, in case you like to know the answers to such equations, the answer is in the book: 160,884,731. By the way, Spencer also let’s you know that this is also 12,275,749 x 13.
I feel like sending his teachers a sympathy (or is that an empathy) card.
Meanwhile, his friend challenged him to work out 2 to the power of 50 and he was beavering away at that challenge in an exercise book when I ran into him at lunchtime at school.
I can’t tell you how relieved I am that the school is bearing the brunt of this Book of Numbers juggernaut.
After all, I am still struggling to master 10 digit arithmetic!
That said, I have gone a few rounds of chess with him this week. He is finding playing against Mummy quite a “different” experience. His father has taught him a few strategic manoeuvres, which we’ve both half-forgotten. So, what with me being more creative than logical, our chess games, you could say, get a bit off track. It’s a case of Rafferty’s Rules with “chase the horse”, “waltzing with the king” and a full theatrical performance. After long grueling matches, we’ve even had a stalemate, when we each were somehow left with just our kings. However, usually these long extended clashes eventually wind up with the king cornered and then I guess it’s “off with his head”.
So for my next conundrum, why haven’t either of my kids approached me with question related to the thesaurus?
Probably because I’d be on my own turf there and actually know what I am doing!
Andy Griffiths is one of Australia’s most popular children’s authors. Andy is best known for The Treehouse series, the JUST! books and The Day My Bum Went Psycho. Over the last 20 years Andy’s books have been New York Times bestsellers, adapted for the stage and television and won more than 50 Australian children’s choice awards. Andy, a passionate advocate for literacy, is an ambassador for The Indigenous Literacy Foundation and The Pyjama Foundation.http://www.treehousebookseries.com/modal/author/