Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Danica McKellar: More Than A Pretty Face

Today we feature a post by Book Monkey Syd from Book Monkeys. This post originally appeared on their site June 2, 2012.

Danica McKellar. You all know her from The Wonder Years and The West Wing, right? Well, know her from her kick-butt math books that helped me amaze my classmates with the power of LCM (Least or Lowest Common Multiple.) She also graduated from UCLA with a Bachelor of Science in Mathematics.

I own all three of her books currently out. Math Doesn’t Suck: How To Survive Middle School Math Without Losing Your Mind Or Breaking A Nail, Kiss My Math: Showing Pre-Algebra Who’s Boss, and Hot X: Algebra Exposed. She’s coming out with a geometry book, Girls Get Curves: Geometry Takes Shape, in August and I can’t wait! Math Doesn’t Suck is the most helpful to me, since I’m doing “Middle-School Math” and, no, I’m not losing my mind or breaking a nail, but thanks for asking. 

In Math the other day, we had Problem Solver Packets, which tell you how to do the problems. But since the problems were LCM, I just looked up the “Birthday Cake Method” in Math Doesn't Suck, which shows how to do LCM's using "layers" of a "cake." Then the problems were SOOO easy. My teacher, Mrs. Brady, asked me to show how I got the problems since that method wasn’t one of the methods in the packet, so I showed her the book. She said this was way easier than the ones in the packet (which included counting the multiples!). I was sooo impressed with Danica!

She also helped me with my study skills and my … well, there’s no other word for it – life skills. In every book there are quizzes, such as “What’s Your Learning Style?” (I’m a visual learner, thank you very much,) “Do You Pick Supportive Friends?” (Yup, I do!) and “Are You A Perfectionist?” (Well, I’m in between “balanced” and “perfectionist,” but that’s good, right?)

She helped me think of ways to deal with schoolwork, chores, siblings (I know, they’re such a pain, aren’t they?) Danica McKellar should REALLY keep writing!


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