clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

This video shows Common Core math is a lot like baking a cake

American parents want to help their children with Common Core math homework, but they just don't fully understand how to.

A 2014 poll from the Public Policy Institute of California found that almost three-quarters of American parents support the new mathematical method, which has been adopted by 43 states. Still, a majority of parents are unfamiliar with Common Core, and they aren’t receiving information on how to understand it.

The study said four out of every 10 parents haven’t received any information on how to understand Common Core, and 16 percent of parents said they received information but needed more to fully understand the mathematics.

“We all want students to be successful and part of that involves parents understanding and engaging in what happens in the classroom,” Patty Scripter, vice president of education for the California State PTA, told Education Source.

So how can parents teach their children about Common Core? After all, they don’t exactly have the time to return to the elementary school classroom and learn all the ins and outs of the new math system.

There are some resource guides, of course. But Common Core teaches math through visuals, so a video may be a helpful method to understanding the principles better. Luckily, Vox’s Libby Nelson published a video April 9 explaining how to get through Common Core math problems in a simple and easy-to-understand way. Nelson compared Common Core math to baking — following a recipe to understand the ingredients — and like handling money.

“Just like dollars can be broken down into quarters, dimes and nickels, ordinary numbers can be broken down into units of hundreds, tens and ones,” Nelson reported. “The new method of teaching math tries to help students understand how numbers are put together. But kids still have to learn the standard algorithm — the basic, familiar and usually fastest way to solve math problems.”

Here’s a look at the video. We hope this helps parents learn a little bit more about Common Core:

There's a pretty good reason why Common Core math problems look so strange to people over 20 years old.

Herb Scribner is a writer for Deseret News National. Send him an email at hscribner@deseretdigital.com or follow him on Twitter @herbscribner.