Kiss My Math: Showing Pre-Algebra Who's Boss

( 25 )

Overview

Read Danica McKellar's posts on the Penguin Blog.

The New York Times bestseller-from the "Dancing With The Stars" contestant and popular author of Math Doesn't Suck, Hot X: Algebra Exposed, and Girls Get Curves-teaches girls how to kick pre-algebra butt

In her New York Times bestselling books, actress and math genius Danica McKellar shatters the "math nerd" stereotype and gives girls the tools to ace middle-school math in her unique, just- ...

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Overview

Read Danica McKellar's posts on the Penguin Blog.

The New York Times bestseller-from the "Dancing With The Stars" contestant and popular author of Math Doesn't Suck, Hot X: Algebra Exposed, and Girls Get Curves-teaches girls how to kick pre-algebra butt

In her New York Times bestselling books, actress and math genius Danica McKellar shatters the "math nerd" stereotype and gives girls the tools to ace middle-school math in her unique, just- us-girls style. Now, in her second book, Kiss My Math, McKellar empowers a new crop of girls-seventh to ninth graders-to tackle the next level of mathematics: pre-algebra.

Stepping up not only the math but the sass and style, McKellar helps math-phobic teenagers moving up into high school chill out and finally "get" negative numbers, variables, absolute values, exponents, and more. As she did so effectively in Math Doesn't Suck, McKellar uses personality quizzes, reader polls, real-life testimonials, and stories from her own life-in addition to clear instruction, helpful tips, and practice problems-revealing why pre-algebra is easier, more relevant, and more glamorous than girls think. McKellar is clearly reaching her audience: parents, teachers, and especially girls are asking for more.

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Editorial Reviews

VOYA - Kristin Fletcher-Spear
McKellar's newest book on pre-algebra is designed to help those teens struggling with math. The book is broken down into five manageable sections: numbers; variables; x; exponents; and functions. Each section has several chapters focusing on parts of the theme, and chapters features step-by-step instructions, tips and tricks, and practice problems. Throughout the text are testimonials from successful women who use math in their jobs and McKellar's diary segments, with stories from her teenage life. One might ask, "How is this book any different from the math books that schools and libraries already have?" McKellar understands teens. She speaks their language. She gives practical examples that have meaning to teens. And honestly, she makes math fun. Anyone who can do that has a hit on her hands. There are only two drawbacks to this book. The examples and conversations McKellar has with the reader are very girl oriented, which is part of her goal of making more girls comfortable with math, but may turn off boy readers. The second drawback is that teens will only pick it up if they are struggling. If this book was used as supplemental material in a class, more teens would be forced to try it and learn that her tips are worthwhile. As one who uses calculators to do simple addition, this reviewer learned something. Reviewer: Kristin Fletcher-Spear
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780452295407
  • Publisher: Penguin Group (USA) Incorporated
  • Publication date: 6/30/2009
  • Pages: 352
  • Sales rank: 60,599
  • Age range: 12 - 14 Years
  • Lexile: 940L (what's this?)
  • Product dimensions: 5.90 (w) x 8.90 (h) x 0.90 (d)

Meet the Author

Danica McKellar

Danica McKellar is the bestselling author of Math Doesn't Suck, Hot X: Algebra Exposed, and, most recently, Girls Get Curves.  Best known for her roles on The Wonder Years and The West Wing, Danica McKellar is also an internationally recognized mathematician and advocate for math education. A summa cum laude graduate of UCLA with a degree in Mathematics, Danica has been honored in Britain’s esteemed Journal of Physics and The New York Times for her work in mathematics, most notably for her role as co-author of a groundbreaking mathematical physics theorem, which bears her name (The Chayes-McKellar-Winn Theorem.) Her passion for promoting girls’ math education began in 2000, when she was invited to speak before Congress on the importance of women in math and science. Since then, Danica has made it a priority to find time in her busy acting schedule to promote math education, often appearing around the country as a speaker at national mathematics conferences.

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Table of Contents

What's Inside?

Acknowledgments x

Kiss My What? xv

Faqs: How to Use This Book xvii

Part 1 Number Stuff

Chapter 1 Breath Mint, Anyone? Adding and Subtracting Integers (Including Negative Numbers!) 1

Chapter 2 The Popular Crowd The Associative and Commutative Properties 20

Chapter 3 Mirror, Mirror, on the Wall ... Multiplying and Dividing Integers (Including Negative Numbers!) 39

Chapter 4 A Relaxing Day at the Spa Intro to Absolute Value 53

Chapter 5 Long-Distance Relationships: Are They Worth It? Mean, Median, Mode 62

You Said: Most Embarrassing Moments in School! 73

Poll: What Guys Really Think ... About Smart Girls No The Cover 75

Quiz: Are You a Stress Case? 77

Part 2 Variable Stuff

Chapter 6 The Blind Date Getting Cozy with Variables 83

Chapter 7 Backpack Too Heavy? Adding and Subtracting with Variables 99

Chapter 8 Something Just Went "Squish" Multiplying and Dividing with Variables 107

Chapter 9 Do You Like Him Like Him? Combining Like Terms 121

Chapter 10 The Costume Party The Distributive Property 130

Chapter 11 Didn't That Guy Say He Was Going to Call? Using Variables to Translate Word Problems 145

More Than 20 Ways to Beat Stress! On The Cover 159

Math ... In Jobs You Might Never Expect! 161

Part 3 Solving For X

Chapter 12 The Art of Gift Wrapping Solving Equations 166

Chapter 13 Nope, She Never Gets Off the Phone Word Problems and Variable Substitution 192

Chapter 14 Can a Guy Be Too Cute? Intro to Solving and Graphing Inequalities 210

You Said: Your Horror Stories About Procrastination! 226

Poll: What Guys Really Think ... About Talented Girls 229

Quiz: Do You Pick Truly Supportive Friends?On The Cover 231

Part 4 All About Exponents

Chapter 15 Champagne and Caviar Intro to Exponents 237

Chapter 16 Excuse Me, Have We Met Before? Intro to Variables with Exponents 254

You Said: Well ... That Didn't Work! 261

Do You Sudoku? 264

Part 5 Intro to Functions and Graphing Lines

Chapter 17 Secret Sausages Intro to Functions 265

Chapter 18 Creative Uses for Bubblegum Intro to Graphing Points and Lines 279

A Final Word 303

Math Test Survival Guide! 305

Appendix 312

Answer Key 318

Index 327

About the Author 332

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
( 25 )
Rating Distribution

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 25 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted August 25, 2008

    Ms. McKellar, You Are Amazing!

    This woman her books were long overdue, but I am thrilled that they are here! I am 28 years old and never learned math past the 2nd grade level. My mental block with math is so unparalelled that my high school math teacher realized that I literally had a nervous breakdown at my desk before each exam and quiz. It would take me four hours just to do my math homework - all the other subjects, including science were a breeze for me. Even in college I only took one math class and got an F because I just couldn't grasp it and the professors could care less about those who didn't understand. I purchased Kiss My Math this past Friday, and, for the first time, I get integers!! I can't tell you all how amazing this book is don't just buy it for your students or children - get it for yourself too if you connect with my story. It's never too late to learn math!

    10 out of 10 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 11, 2008

    To make you smart and confident in life

    I already have a PhD from MIT, so I'm reading this book just for fun. I was happily surprised by the size of the book (over 300 pages), and that's a good thing: Danica's tutorial tone is always a pleasure, and you can start on any chapter where you need help, so the large amount of material is readily accessible. The visual style of the book matches her tutorial tone: It all looks like something you can do yourself, yet the substance of the math are never obscured by her sense of fun and the changes in fonts and text formats on the pages. Plus this book satisfies a pet criterion of mine: The book still packs enough substance per page to let my mind stride through the material without getting bogged down by fluff. I mean, some attempts to popularize math or science are so full of entertainment they make it extra work to strip off the fluff to get to the material. This book is an example of how to do it right: All the fun is here to help you learn and remember by engaging and connecting different parts of your mind. I don't care how many astronauts this book creates, I'll be delighted if this book gets us more smart and confident women who can 'see' in a level-headed way what is going on in their lives. I bet this book can do that.

    6 out of 6 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 6, 2008

    McKellar Does it Again

    Danica McKellar is every parent of a middle-schoolers dream. She makes math glamourous. Her first book 'Math Doesn't Suck...' showed that McKellar had a knack for easy explanations of complex problems in mathematics. In this book she continues that talent with explanations of pre-algebra. As a college professor, I hope that other educators see the value of 'Selling' the student on how 'fantastic' their subjects are through methods such as Ms. McKellar uses. The book is easy to read and the examples are fantastic for teen girls...Now if only someone would write a book like this for boys!

    4 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 7, 2008

    Never knew math could be so easy!!!!!!

    As an adult who has struggled with basic math concepts, I found the book easy read, informative and fun. I will definitely use the strategies and recommend the books to all the students I tutor. Great for teenagers and adults who want to help their own children grasp math!!!!!!

    4 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted January 16, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    Girls Can Do Math

    This is the second book by Ms. McKellar,the sequel to Math Doesn't Suck, and we recommend them both highly. It is not necessary to read the book from cover to cover. Anytime your child is having trouble understanding an assignment she/he can refer to the pertinent chapter. Ms. McKellar explains the concept in language that is easy to understand and in terms that kids are more likely to remember.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted November 13, 2009

    I Also Recommend:

    Kiss My Math Rocks!

    Having trouble in math this is the perfect book to get you over the anxiety. It's catchy and works well with beginning Algebra.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted July 9, 2012

    I'm 32 years old and have been out of high school for 14 years

    I'm 32 years old and have been out of high school for 14 years now, and decided to take the plunge and get that long overdue college degree! Obviously my brain is very rusty, and Pre-Algebra and Algebra were difficult classes when I was a teenager. So I bought this book to relearn the topic and better prepare myself for college. As the younger crowd would say, "OMG!" Danica McKellar has this easy writing style that makes it feel she's standing right there teaching you! She takes each topic and breaks it down in easy to understand terms. All of the examples and graphics are icing on the cake! She teaches this topic better than my teachers ever did. (And that's sad considering my teachers were there in person.)

    Being female, I can definitely appreciate the "girl" talk in the book, though it is aimed at teenage girls. However, that stuff is only a few pages here or there, and very easy to skip over if you have no interest in reading it. So to all women young and old, I recommend this book for your math needs!!

    I plan on getting Hot X: Algebra Exposed, after I'm done with Kiss My Math. I'm sure Danica's 'Hot X' book won't disappoint!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 9, 2010

    Whole family loves these books !!

    My daughter, who will be a Sophomore in the fall, just failed 9th grade Algebra1, even after meeting with her math teacher twice a week before class!!!! I had bought one of the "for dummies" Algebra workbooks and saw this one and Math Doesn't Suck. As I was reading it to see if it would be any good, I didn't want to put it down in the store. I have struggled with math my whole life, and my husband too and we all are going through these books!!! These are the first math books we actually want to read !!! I can't wait to see my daughter's improvement. Note to teachers out there: Please explain problems in layman's terms, not the brainiac technical terms. You are not getting through to more kids than you know, I'm sure...not to mention, when you bore them, you lose their attention straight off !!! Remember the show, "Frasier"? Seriously how many adults, no less kids could relate to being taught that way???

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 22, 2010

    I Also Recommend:

    If you want to spend a rewarding time with a math book, Kiss My Math is for you. Who would ever think that learning math could be an exciting adventure? Kiss My Math is the book that proves it.

    I was searching for a book to help me with my college math course when I ran across Kiss My Math. The cover itself sells the book giving you the insight on what you will be reading about inside. The title says it all because after reading this book, you'll have that superiority complex over math. The step by step guidance you receive makes you feel that you can surmount any math phobia that you may have. For those who only need a little math pick me up, Kiss My Math will strenghten your knowledge.
    A co-worker said that her daughter was having problems with her math, so I showed her the book and she loved it, saying that she was going to buy it the same day. So if you're looking fo a math book to perk up those math skills, Kiss My Math is the book for you.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 22, 2009

    I Also Recommend:

    Math for girls!

    The "sequel" to Math Doesn't Suck is great. The style is perfectly readable, with straightforward explanations, relevant examples, and "friendly" text (it feels as if the author is writing to a friend). I have found both books very helpful when relearning/reviewing a topic for tutoring at the Middle School level. I wish they had been around when my kids were that age (or when I was that age).

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted May 10, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    Great math concept book!

    Kiss My Math is a very well written book that makes math concepts understandable to the middle school student and anybody older than that (and perhaps slightly younger as well). Although the writing is targeted at females, the analogies are accessible regardless of gender. I recommend this book particularly for math teachers looking for new ways to teach concepts (specifically middle school, freshman and remedial concepts), parents seeking to brush up on the things their children are learning or will learn soon, students going through middle school math, and anybody else who wants to learn/relearn middle school math concepts via a highly readable book.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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