Is three minutes a long time?

I was putting Zoe to bed today and the process was moving rather slowly.  She kept coming up with excuses not to change into pajamas or brush her teeth.  Finally, she sensed that I was getting frustrated and that it was time to start giving in.  The following wonderful conversation followed:

Zoe: Okay, I’ll go sleep for three minutes and then come back to play.
Me: No, three minutes is a very short time.
Zoe: But three minutes is a very long time for warming up milk – it’ll boil!

Zoe sure has a way of saying things seemingly out of the blue that are yet not completely crazy.

Me: That is true, three minutes is a very long time for warming up milk, but it is a very short time for sleeping.
Zoe: Three minutes is a short time for sleeping?

I would have been certain that she was playing with me if this had not been said with such a straight face. Or perhaps she is a much better actress than I give her credit for :-). Still, I had what I thought was a pretty good come back.

Me: Is three minutes a long time for a cartoon?
Zoe: No! Three minutes is a very short cartoon!
Me: Just like three minutes is a very short nap.

And somehow, after that, Zoe dutifully went to change into her pajamas without asking any further questions.

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About aofradkin

I enjoy thinking about presenting mathematical concepts to young children in exciting and engaging ways.
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