kitchen table math, the sequel: The UK regains some sense in math

Friday, January 18, 2013

The UK regains some sense in math

I've heard it remarked that what happens in Europe is just a preview of what's coming to our shores here in the US.  If that's true, then this makes me smile:

Pupils aged 11 will be given extra marks for employing traditional methods of calculation in end-of-year Sats tests, it emerged.
Children who get the wrong answer but attempt sums using long and short multiplication or adding and subtracting in columns will be rewarded with additional points.
Ministers insisted the changes – being introduced from 2016 – were intended to stop pupils using “clumsy, confusing and time-consuming” methods of working out.
This includes so-called “chunking” and “gridding” where pupils are encouraged to break problems down into numerous component stages before an answer is reached.
Elizabeth Truss, the Education Minister, will outline the plans in a speech to the North of England Education Conference in Sheffield on Thursday.
Speaking before the address, she said: “Chunking and gridding are tortured techniques but they have become the norm in recent years. Children just end up repeatedly adding or subtracting numbers, and batches of numbers.
“They may give the right answer but they are not quick, efficient methods, nor are they methods children can build on, and apply to more complicated problems.
Everything old truly is new again.

1 comment:

Catherine Johnson said...

oh my gosh!

chunking and gridding!