My Experience with Fibonacci

As I was driving my ten year old daughter to one of her many activities a few weeks ago, she asked me a question that made me break out in a sweat:

Mom, have you heard of Fibonacci?

I’m sorry dear, have I heard of the what?

The Fib-O-nacci sequence, Mom.

As we sat there in a longer than acceptable awkward silence, I racked my brain trying to figure out what it could be. My daughter is quite the fashionista- so maybe it’s an Italian fashion designer? Or maybe it’s some slang term the young kiddos are using nowadays?

Can you use it in context for me? I asked.  When I glanced at her in the rear view mirror, I saw her, sitting there in the back seat with that look.  The jig was up- she knew I had no idea what she was talking about.

Shocked as only a ten year old daughter can be because her Mom had never heard about this so called Fibonacci sequence, she explained to me that it’s a simple numerical series that is the foundation for a mathematical relationship behind phi.

When we arrived home, I asked my husband, who has always been comfortable with math if this Fibonacci thing was some new-fangled math that the kids were learning.

He started laughing and began to tell me who Fibonacci was and how long ago his sequence was discovered. Turns out Fibonacci was born in 1170- who knew!?

So, how am I supposed to be confident in helping my own kids with math if I am not comfortable with it myself? And let’s be honestcomfortable is being kind. Learning math has caused me anxiety since my own school days and the reality that I may have to face it again is not something I am excited about!

We recently posted a blog related to this topic titled Teaching Math To Your Child that offers some great tips and things to remember when helping your own child with math.

All of those tips will absolutely help you help your kiddos learn, but I would like to add a few more tips that came from my recent experience with this Fibonacci character. I think these may be the most important tips of all:

  • Cut yourself some slack.  Moms are pretty amazing people; overachievers who like to push themselves. But there’s only so far one can stretch and it’s important to remember that.
  • Learn to laugh at yourself. Humor can help dissolve tension and anxiety!

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