If you want to be counted, you have to first learn to count

It may be because of the use of computers and calculators or something I am not aware of, but I get a sense our young people really don’t know ’rithmatic — how to count!

My grandfather came to this country when he was in his twenties. He fathered seven children; they would update his green card every year. He was never really comfortable speaking the English language and signed any legal documents with an X because he didn’t know how to write in any language. But my aunts and uncles would laugh that Pop could do numbers with the likes of Yale graduates and not only hold his own, but beat then in adding up the columns. He was never shortchanged.

I recently noticed that the young people making change at local eateries are thrown for a math loop when you give them money that is not in sync with their cash register.

For example, the bill is $10.10 — 10 dollars and 10 cents. I have a twenty.

They ring in the twenty on their register and are told what the change should be. I don’t want a lot of pocket change, so I give them a twenty-dollar bill and a dime — 10 cents. I want a ten-dollar bill back. They crash and lock up in place.

I have gotten back anything from $10 to a quarter to $9.90. They have no understanding of numbers or how they work on the simplest levels.

It is really amazing. It happens time in and time out. It makes no difference what the young person behind the counter looks like, they all don’t know numbers, just simple adding and subtracting. With all the charter schools and money being spent on education, arithmetic is a stumbling block for our young people…

Anyone want to see what happens if we take away spell check? Fundamentals, back to fundamentals.

A point to ponder.

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