Poor Millie, she’s really struggling with her maths at the moment – to the point where we’re going to mention it to her teacher, Mrs Childs, when we see her next week.
The new maths seems to have come from nowhere this term; it’s caught us out, so no wonder Millie’s been caught out too. Last year there was some number work (I wouldn’t quite call it “Maths”) but now we’re straight into multiplication tables, adding and subtracting, etc., none of which Millie quite grasps yet. She can add and subtract but only by using her fingers, and has yet to make the mental breakthrough of manipulating numbers in her head.
Now, I’m slightly more numerate than the Lovely Melanie, but that only means I can do arithmetic in my head. To my ongoing embarrassment I don’t actually know how to do long division and only scraped a C in GCSE Maths the second time around.
Anyway, because she’s at home in the evenings it’s the Lovely Melanie who currently deals with most of the homework, so my arithmetical genius is a moot point. Millie and I read together on the bus in the mornings and I always enjoy answering questions from both girls (such as “What is dew?”) but that’s as far as my homework contributions go.
Without wishing to make excuses for Millie, it’s worth remembering that she’s effectively a year younger than most of the other children in her class as a result of being born so prematurely back in 2005. So she’s not stupid by any measurement – her reading has improved immensely in just the last couple of months – she’s just, well…small, I guess.
Millie did, in any case, quite innocently come up with a brilliant solution to her missing mathematical acumen just last week. We only found out because she helpfully warned the Lovely Melanie, who was worried about how she would fare in the weekly maths test, that there was no need to worry – she had copied her answers in the test from Maximus Tubbs (he of the legendary name!)
We didn’t have the heart to tell her off for coming up with such a practical – if morally ambiguous – solution, but we are going to have to mention it to Mrs Childs next week (sorry for grassing you up, Millie love!)
It would have been easier if Maximus Tubbs was rubbish at maths, but he (and Millie) got full marks in the test!