I failed math in public school. I got an E, which did not stand for excellent.

All I remember about math is being frustrated and angry. And that no matter how much time I spent at the dining room table, I never got it. I still don’t get it, which is why I thought it would be a good idea to get DK’s How to Be Good at Math, the simplest-ever visual guide.

For the first few pages of this very thick book, I was pretty excited because the author explained a math concept and I understood it. Then I continued to read and I did what I always do when it comes to math – blank out and stop understanding a word it was saying.

I have come to realize math, even in a book form, should only be read in short burst.

Unless you are my nine year old, who not only understands math, but likes it.

My son spent about an hour reading How to Be Good At Math during the first part of our car ride this weekend. On the return flight home, he took what he was learning and tested me on my knowledge, which is quite lacking. He then attempted to teach me. He was most successful when he used chocolate as an example. If you there was a bar of chocolate and each bar had two squares across and four squares down, how many squares would be in the chocolate bar? Not only did the example make sense to me, I was able to answer the question! And wanted chocolate.

The 300-plus-page book “covers all the math needed for ages seven to 11 and grades two to five” including numbers, calculating, measurement, geometry, statistics and algebra. Each chapter has multiple subjects, lots of graphics and “tests” to practise your work.

I am still not good at math. I still hate it. But if I ever have a pressing desire to work “out an area with a formula” or calculating probability, I have the answers at my fingertips.

As a side note, I have always said that I am terrible at directions because it’s math. And I was right. Compass directions are in this math book. Vindicated.

A copy of this book was provided by DK books for honest review. The opinions are my own.