What's the deal with 11 and 12?

I've been helping my son with his counting. For some reason, he's struggling with the number 15; he leaves it out every time. He skips right over it like it never existed. I'm not positive why, but I have a theory. I think it has something to do with 11 and 12. So I try to explain to him how the 10-based number system works. It all makes perfect sense, and is a nice simple pattern of ten sequential numbers repeated over and over.

"So you have 0 through 9, then you start all over again, but add '1' to the front and tack on the word "teen." I tell him. "Ten should really be 'Teen', but oh well, it's close enough. So here, let's try it out: 0,1,2, 3,..9, 10, oh wait, 11? 12? What the heck? They don't conform to the pattern! This makes no sense!"

No wonder he's confused! Why aren't they called oneteen and twoteen?

After we hit 11, he thinks the whole pattern thing was either a trick or a lie...he's not buying it. Now he's just trying to memorize all the numbers, skipping fifteen, and throwing in an eleventeen for good measure because he figures it's all just arbitrary rubbish anyway.


Julie said…
I love how Ahser says eleventeen!!!

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