Imagine working with a physical trainer at the gym every Wednesday, and not doing any exercise between one Wednesday and the next. Would you expect to maximize your health and fitness this way?
As parents we all want our children to be successful in school. Watching our children struggle can be difficult to handle, and at the same time, in order for children to develop inner strength and a sense of efficacy, they need to struggle, and sometimes, they need to fail. In a recent study on over-parenting...
"Meet the children wherever they are."
As teachers, this is a foundational idea that we must never forget. We can plan the world’s greatest lessons, but if they aren’t tailored to the students we have, the lessons won’t be as successful as they could, and should, be.
When today’s adults were in elementary school they probably learned to multiply in much the same way. Today, however, children in the US are often taught methods of multiplication that their parents have never seen, and, frankly, may not understand. This article is dedicated to all those parents who have looked at their children’s math homework with a puzzled expression and wondered, “What the heck is that?” For everyone else, I hope you find it interesting to learn a few new ways of doing multiplication! A future article will highlight some alternative methods for doing other basic operations.
According to the Standards published by the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics, designed to guide math education, “Continual emphasis on computational estimation helps children develop creative and flexible thought processes and fosters in them a sense of mathematical power.” It isn’t just for getting a decent approximation; it’s a crucial tool for helping children strengthen their fundamental understanding of, and facility with, numbers.
Estimation is a funny thing. At first glance it would seem that it’s far easier to arrive at a reasonable estimate than to obtain a precise answer, and for some types of problems this may be true. After all, isn’t it easier to be close than to be exact?
This is the second part of a two-part blog post. If you haven’t done so, please read Part One before reading this. Thanks!
In our society, it’s not uncommon to hear someone say, jokingly, “I was always terrible at math!” But could you imagine chatting with someone at a dinner party and hearing them say, “I was always terrible at reading?” It has become perfectly acceptable to belittle mathematics, to joke about hating it or being terrible at it, as if it’s a nuisance one had to endure when younger, but now in adulthood it’s unnecessary.