Yes, Children, Math Does Matter

Our Grandma, Emily Turner, was a school teacher before she married Grandpa Allen Vance. She was a strict disciplinarian, too, from the memories my Mom F related to me. Mom talked of getting her ears ‘boxed’ by Grandma – using the hand where she wore her heavy wedding rings – and that hurt!

I wonder what Emily would make of today’s education system, where teachers are wanting to eliminate tests and marks in favor of a more general system being proposed. Something like “Comprehends subject,” “Getting a grip on it” and “Still Clueless.” (These are my interpretations. I think the latter will be referred to as “Needs improvement” or something to that effect.)

Years back I read this interesting account in the memoirs of an Oklahoma veterinarian. He writes about dealing with a young fellow who would have been rated “Deficient” in Comprehension.

One day this vet had a simple neutering surgery to do on a cat. He was, however, a bit concerned about his new assistant, a self-confident young man who seemed rather slapdash about his work.

He’d given this assistant the task of preparing the cat for the surgery while he went to attend some other four-footed patients. But before the doctor left the surgery room he repeated his instructions to the assistant, just to be on the safe side:  “Now remember, administer one cc of anesthetic for every five pounds of body weight.”

“Yes, sir,” the young man answered nonchalantly.

When the time came to do the surgery the doctor entered the room where the cat was lying on the operating table and he gasped. Puss looked extremely relaxed – flat out on the table. The doctor looked at his assistant in horror. “How much anesthetic did you give this cat?!”

“Just what you said, sir,” the assistant answered, “Five ccs for every one pound of body weight.”

And the cat is sleeping still.

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About Christine Goodnough

I'm a wife, mom & grandma, a writer, homemaker and nature lover at home on the Canadian prairies. I post short stories and poems about life and personal experiences, writing from a Christian perspective and adding a dash of humor where I can.
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