Math isn’t the easiest subject. For many school children, its the topic they dread the most. Numbers, parabolas, fractions, and PEDMAS— math can be tricky to master. And believe me, when I say, I definitely speak from experience. As a kid, I was an honor student who was known for my good grades. Despite this fact, math always perplexed me and required me to work much harder than any of my other topics. Later, when I got older, my relationship with math only became much worse.
In today’s society where everyone carries cell phones, you do actually have a calculator in your pocket at all times (contrary to what our primary school teachers had threatened).
So, when you find yourself in a situation where a calculator isn’t an option, you may need a little refresher. That’s exactly what happened to one caring father in a subway train in Brooklyn, New York.
Denise Wilson, a Brooklyn resident, was riding the subway two weeks ago when she saw a man dressed in red, leafing through a folder of papers. He had a look of confusion in his eyes.
In a Facebook post, Denise explained: “So, today [on my way] from work, the guy in red sat down opened up his folder and started reading.”
Turns out Corey Simmons, the man in red, was looking over his third grader’s math homework. His son Corey Jr. had failed a test on fractions, and the man was trying to re-teach himself the material in order to help him.
So far, Corey wasn’t having much luck. But Denise was still touched by the gesture.
“I was like ‘wow’,” Denise said. “Because a lot of dads don’t get enough credit and in our community, there is not a lot of active fathers and for him to make the effort to relearn math touched my heart.”
The man, who was in his 40s, was struggling to learn the material— but that’s when help appeared in an unexpected place.
Another passenger on the subway sat down beside Corey and asked him what he was reading. When he heard Corey’s son had failed his math test, and Corey was trying to help him, the stranger offered to give him a hand.
“He was just telling the guy, ‘I’m in my 40s and all of this is new to me, so I’ve got to relearn this to each my son because he failed a math test,'” Denise explained.
The Good Samaritan told Corey he used to be a math teacher. He then spent the rest of the ride quizzing the father and helping him understand the questions he got wrong.
“When I say I started tearing up, that warmed my heart,” Denise said.
“So I snapped a picture.”
When Denise told the story and uploaded the photo online, the post was shared over 40,000 times. Later, media outlets including CBS, Inside Edition, and PEOPLE covered the event, interviewing Denise and Corey about what had occurred.
People were touched by the math teacher’s sweet gesture, and the incident is a reminder that little actions can (and do!) make a big impact on another people’s lives.
All too often, we show a lack of concern or caring towards the people around us. If we see someone who looks like they’re having a bad day, we don’t often approach them to ask what is going on. We’re all taught to mind our own business to make it through the day. But, every once in a while we get a story like this— and it reminds us why we shouldn’t.
“People in America should do that more often,” Corey said. “I got a better understanding [of the math] and was able to relate it to my son.”
Corey may have a better understanding of fractions now— but he still told Inside Edition he plans on getting Corey Jr. a tutor.
Describing the incident on the subway, Denise has said, “It was just one person helping another, and I thought that was beautiful.”
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So today omw from work the guy in the red sat down opend up his folder and started reading a few stops later the guy…