I’m Trying to Love Math by Bethany Barton

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I’m Trying to Love Math by Bethany Barton is told in alternating black-and-purple fonts, and an unnamed narrator (assumed to be a human) and a purple alien have a discussion about math, with the alien pointing out all the ways that the narrator has used math in his explanations: such as fractions and ratios. Math is also used in navigation, in music, and in the beauty of the world (symmetry, fractals, and the golden ratio).  

When the narrator brings up pizza and the alien asks “how big it is,” the narrator realizes math can help with that as well, so the alien introduces pi and it’s usefulness in measuring and calculating area of circles.

Although just that one page discusses circles and pi, the book is very readable and is a humorous and highly useful perspective on math in everyday life. The readable text includes reader cues, like “hold [the book] tight and give it a few good shakes” to get the extra math symbols or numerals of pi off the page. This gives the book a nice read-aloud feel. It would work well as an introduction to math in everyday life or for a mini-lesson learning about pi.

Reviewed on February 4, 2023

About the author 

Rebecca Reid

Rebecca Reid is a homeschooling, stay-at-home mother seeking to make the journey of life-long learning fun by reading lots of good books. Rebecca Reads provides reviews of children's literature she has enjoyed with her children; nonfiction that enhances understanding of educational philosophies, history and more; and classical literature that Rebecca enjoys reading.

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