Here's a secret you might not know: I used to be an elementary, classroom teacher. Yup. I was Ms. Koplovitz, your 4th grade teacher
Math was my favorite subject to teach -- just as it was when I was a kid. I was one of those girls who was good at math.
There was one thing you could bet on: When you taught adding fractions, some kid would invariably complain: when am I ever going to use this? Convert fractions and add them? I am never going to do it in my life.
Well, Mr.-Smartypants-4th-grader, I use this skill ALL the time. Yesterday, I had a template scheduled for a fire place surround for my Cambridge job. Here is a mock up of the column design we are doing on the face of the mantle.
It was all about eights, sixteens, halves and quarters. Calculators make it more confusing because you have to convert to decimals and then back. An Excel spreadsheet would have made it easy, had their been a computer handy. (There wasn't).
So, I just took out a pencil, lined up those fractions and added. Old school. Yup. Math and Design go hand in hand. Or rather arithmetic and design...and certainly geometry and design. 2 trains traveling at different speeds? Calculus? Not so much.