Today Grasshopper (4th grade) had a math assignment. There were ten problems of about equal difficulty. the most fun one, however, was the final one. Using the functions; add, subtract, multiply and divide, parenthesis, and the numbers 1 -9, create a math problem where the answer is 100. You can't change the order of the numbers. There are several correct answers.
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9
How he did it:
((((1+2) x 3) x 4) +5) + (((6x7) +8) +9)= 100
basically, 41+59 = 100
uh huh. fourth grade math. And he's in the "average" group.
Not that long ago I was at a dinner where a vocal conservative said "We should just admit that public schools are a complete failure, shut them down, and let the private sector take over." This guy's kid is in the same school district as my kids are.
My kid stuck with this problem with minimal help and encouragement, and solved it. AND HAD FUN! Failure? I don't think so.