# Take the PAIN out of math part 2

## Counting, really? Doesnt everybody know all about counting?

No, there’s actually a lot to learn here.

As I said in part 1, I will be keeping in mind the question “do we need math”?

I am going to start with a very basic approach here, but bear with me, it will get interesting. **There are no shortcuts on the path to mastering mathematics.**

So… what is counting? I mean, you can point to a dozen eggs and say, “one, two, three… twelve” but how is that different than pointing to them and saying “A, B, C… L”? Or is there a real difference? Think about that a second.

Math is many things, it’s a science, an art, a language, a journey, a destination. It helps us think, decide, and pursue truth. Counting, the most basic form of math, is a language. It uses words and symbols to describe reality.

Let’s say you have a number of sheep in your pasture. There are wild animals in your area, so each evening, when you bring them into their pen, you have your daughter make a mark on the ground each time one enters the pen. ||||| ||||| |||

Then you compare those marks to permanent marks you made on a board months ago. If they match, all the sheep are safely home.

What actually happened here, is that your daughter counted the sheep, and you counted her marks! Seems pretty primitive, but really, you don’t need any more than that to count thirteen sheep.