“Can you help me with my math homework?”

If, like most parents, this question fills you with a sense of dread
(or even panic), then this is the book for you.

So much for the “good old days” when elementary students simply memorized their times tables and struggled through long division. Today, students are expected not just to find the right answer, but also to choose the best method for doing so—and to explain why it works.

On top of that, students are learning new strategies—even for basic arithmetic—that look foreign to many parents: What are open number lines, decomposing and nets, and how do you multiply on a grid?

If your attempts to help your child are met with “That’s not how the teacher does it,” then it’s time to take the stress out of math homework. Old Dogs, New Math is your guide to the changing world of elementary school math, including:

Complete with sample questions, examples of children’s errors, and over 25 games and activities, Old Dogs, New Math will not only demystify math, but also help you and your child discover math all around you—and have fun doing it!

Rob Eastaway has authored and coauthored several best-selling books that connect math with everyday life, including Why Do Buses Come in Threes? and How Many Socks Make a Pair?

Mike Askew, a Professor of Math Education at Monash University in Melbourne, Australia, taught in elementary schools for several years, and now works in teacher education.