This game has great music, intriguing storylines, and makes *me* want to play it. I have been sitting next to my child, watching the game with great interest.

First she got to pick her avatar’s name and appearance. (Some of the other math game apps we tried did not have this feature, which disappointed her.) She also has a house and acquires items, which she loves. In these ways, the game reminds me of Animal Crossing. While her character and name remains constant, at the beginning of game play each day, she can choose a world.

Then within each world…

After teaching elementary and middle-school math for a decade, I became a different kind of teacher, thanks to COVID-19: a homeschool teacher to a kindergartener and a preschooler.


While I am a big proponent of Montessori-style child-led learning, let’s just say that my kids — like most kids — love to learn. They lead explorations into numbers every day, all the time. If your kids don’t lead you into numbers, no worries. Life gives you numbers: How many apples did we buy at the store? How many apples did we eat today? I wonder how many green crayons you…

If your kid, like mine, wants to learn about a specific subject, here is what you can do. (One of my kids wants to learn about dinosaurs, so I will use that example.)

I do these steps without kids (under age 10):

1. Open internet browser. Search “dinosaur DK”. You will probably want materials. Avoid urls that say “books” unless you want to buy the books; in regular times, I rely on libraries for these books.

2. Open internet browser. Search “dinosaurs Scholastic”. Some of these resources require a Scholastic subscription, and some are free right now for pandemic…

I hear parents talking to one another and give one another advice. I’m a teacher, and when I know both kids as students, it pains me to overhear the conversation. I think to myself, “That would NEVER work for the other kid! And yes, it TOTALLY works for your kid.”

During this time of pandemic, there is a lot of parent-to-parent advice going around: “homeschool” schedules, online classes and learning resources, balancing parenting with working from home. One quick thing we can do in online communication especially, when we can’t see each other’s faces or hear each other’s tone, is…

Our local schools are closing. Yours have, too, or they will soon. What will you do with this time?

First, you may ask yourself about your job, your healthcare, your finances. Do I have sick leave? PTO? Does FMLA cover me?

Second, take care of your children emotionally. You tell them that the grown-ups have got this. You will not give a lecture on exponential graphs or stories about how the percentages of fatality vary from locale to locale. Unless your child is under the age of 2, in which case, carry on.

You will tell them that you are…

As I write this, Seattle Public Schools has closed for a minimum of 2 weeks due to coronavirus. Other cities may follow suit in the coming days and weeks. Chinese schools have been closed for 6 weeks so far, Japan for 4 weeks.

“What am I going to do with my kids all day???” This is the refrain in all of our minds.

You may also be wondering if their school will make up the extra days and go into July. I can’t answer that, but I can provide my services. I have taught Math from 2nd through 8th grade.

Kobe Bryant and 13-year-old daughter feared dead.

LA mourns Kobe.

The world mourns Kobe.

His wife and three daughters at

home. One can imagine the

wailing or the stony

silence of their house.

Two young ones who will not

understand for years. A teenager and her

mother clutching one another or slamming doors.

Across town, a teenager without her mother, father, or

sister. Her brother a thousand miles north.

Will he return to care for her?

Will he choose his own young life?

Will she go to live with a friend, aunt, or with Kobe’s widow —

united by a…

Lurline Sweet

Founder of Sweet Math,

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