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Saturday Morning Mathematics

Saturday morning Owen and I were having some fun with math (Marcus helped by turning an otherwise orderly counting process into more of a Monte Carlo process). We started by counting the change in his piggy bank: 1363 pennies in various denominations. While putting the change back in the bank, Owen paused and said, "Daddy, do you know what 37 plus 16 is? It's 53!" I figured he got pretty lucky since we normally do double-digit addition on paper, not in his head. Assuming it was just a fluke, I asked him what 55 plus 13 was. He paused, and I thought he was stumped. Then, after about 10 seconds he exclaimed, "Oh, I know! It's 68!" Well, I'll be!

So I grabbed the camera as we proceeded down the stairs:



I'm pretty amazed at his ability to compute in his head. I think he has a real talent for visualizing numbers and manipulating them spatially (if that's the right term). My mom often recounts the story of me, when I was 5, telling her how many quarters were in two dollars, then three and four dollars. But Owen also has an amazing memory, which is something I lack. I often joke that I have a good processor and fast RAM, but a faulty hard drive (I'm doubly hamstrung because I don't do a good job of keeping notes). Owen's hard drive is like a vault.

Sorry to boast on my boy, but I'm definitely one proud father. As long as he's interested in playing math games, I'm more than happy to oblige. Of course, he may grow up and want to enroll in theater school. If he does, I'll support him fully. But for now, I'm gonna enjoy all the math and football.

Comments

jcom said…
Wow what a smart kid! Lemme know if he's looking for a summer REU.
blissful_e said…
Awesome!! Go Owen!!

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