Not that I didn’t know an answer to a fifth grade question..but that I took my fifth-grader’s answer as gospel instead of trusting my own knowledge. Strangely enough, both my 3rd grader and my fifth grader are learning map skills in social studies at the same time. They both had tests last week and we were studying together. Longitude and latitude were two terms they were both expected to know. When I turned to Ryan (3rd grader) and explained that longitude went north-south, Matt interrupted and said I was wrong. I blinked for a moment, sure that longitude lines went north-south and he said no, that it was an imaginary line that went around the earth and that latitude went up and down. Matt was so sure I figured well maybe I was wrong, I must have forgotten (not that I have ever had anyone ask me the latitude and longitude of any location) and he had to be right and thought nothing of it. We made outlines, electronic study cards on the iPads and they took their respective tests.
Well, both tests came back yesterday and both, of course, got longitude and latitude wrong. I was flabbergasted!!! I got really upset with myself – since when do I take the word of a 10 year old?! I have a total of 15 years more education than Matt which includes not only a Bachelor’s but a Doctorate as well, and I let a fifth grader tell me I was wrong and never second-guessed him. And then I smiled to myself – I always tell my kids to have the courage of their convictions – to have faith in what they believe and apparently Matty embraced it fully. Shame on me!