Successful Engineer Still Keeps TouchMath in Her Comfort Zone

When she ran into trouble with speed multiplication, Meghan Strand started to hate math. She was in a third grade class for gifted students. Yet, the bright girl had no patience with her own failure to comprehend multiplication. So one day Meghan flatly told her mother that she was finished. She wasn't interested in math anymore. She was just eight years old. Meghan is now an environmental engineer with the U.S. Geological Survey.

What was the magic formula? What transformed a frustrated child into a confident engineer, a woman pursuing one of the most difficult quantitative professions in a world dominated by men?

Meghan credits her persistent, motivating mother, Lyn Strand.

"My mom was the most important figure in my education," said Meghan. "She was involved every step of the way. She's my hero."

Lyn Strand did more than express concern for her daughter's third-grade math conundrum. When the challenge of multiplication threatened to derail her daughter's otherwise innate enthusiasm, Lyn started teaching Meghan TouchMath multiplication, using sequence counting.

Meghan has used her TouchMath education to learn more than sequence counting and multiplication. She has mastered differential equations and applied math to groundwater analysis and wave theory. What does this advanced math whiz remember about TouchMath?

"I remember bright colors and 'friendly math.' I remember the TouchPoints and solving problems until I got the hang of it. My mom awarded stickers as an incentive. It was effective. I mean, TouchMath made it fun."

Even after years of theoretical and applied mathematics, she sometimes returns to TouchMath as if to an old friend. "I revert back sometimes in high-stress situations when I need to take a deep breath and get into my comfort zone. I return to sequence counting and see the dots on numbers. They're still in the back of my mind, and they help."

TouchMath has played a unique role in the life of this accomplished engineer, someone who tackles every challenge that comes her way, whether social or educational, with grace and competence. As Meghan says: "TouchMath gives children a solid basis for math. It's easier to understand because it's visual. They learn that math is fun. It's extremely beneficial if you get that idea clicking."

Today, Meghan is the mother of 2-year-old Westin. TouchMath numbers fill his nursery walls and the story continues.

Just in case you're looking for some light reading...

Talk about succeeding in math! Meghan is a published author with eight research books to her credit including:

Atlas of Interoccurance Intervals for Selected Thresholds of Daily Precipitation in Texas by William H. Asquith and Meghan Strand

Depth-Duration Frequency of Annual Precipitation Maxima in Texas by William H. Asquith and Meghan Strand

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