Kirsten West, PhD is a former senior market research analyst and Biophysicist (with many, many esoteric publications to her name) who has abandoned the corporate and academic worlds to homeschool her wonderful children in a perfectly noisy house filled with the real-life versions of the cartoon characters featured in her "Doodles Do Algebra" series of math books.
Note from the Author: Doodles Do Algebra is designed specifically to help you answer the "But, why?" question for your kids. My children run circles around me every day with questions and ideas and I want to share my math teaching techniques and tools with you. "But, why?" And back to the drawing-board I go yet again. Yesterday was for the most part a day of mommy-learning. I was teaching my kids how to expand certain algebraic fractions in to their infinite series, a process which requires long division of polynomials. As I began describing the process to them yesterday over lunch, I realized that the first time we passed through long division of polynomials my kids understood the mechanics, or the "how", but not the "why". And so my daughter told me over the dining table that I could explain the "how" until I was blue in the face but that neither she nor her brother would ever remember how to do this type of algebraic math unless I could explain the "why." I sat back and asking what they meant, watched as they both picked up bits of chalk and began drawing on our chalk board. My daughter began talking about Vi Hart and how well she described infinite series and elephants and drew pictures that she remembered having seen. My son agreed with her and piped up with an added example of a great math explanation in a Murderous Maths book and drew a picture of a spiral based on 1×2 rectangles. Then came the inevitable twin discussion between them about the downsides of the various math curricula and why the "why" was so important. That afternoon, I sat down to create "Doodles Do Algebra" for my children. And now that they have successfully completed the curriculum, I am sharing it with you.
For More Information about the Doodles Do Algebra curriculum, see http://www.TeachMeBetter.org where you can get more details on the curriculum and also get your questions answered.
If You Homeschool, And Enjoy Reading and Sharing Tips and Ideas, see the author's personal blog at http://www.byebyebrickandmortar.com
If you (like the author) are a Pinterest Junkie, see her boards that are filled with homeschooling ideas at http://www.pinterest.com/momto2doodles/