Monday, November 10, 2008

Another child in trouble for stacking

And this child isn't even one of the kids we're corrupting on the Continental Math League.

Rather, it was his mother who showed him "how I learned to solve this kind of problem." And he found her way more efficient than the "splitting" that his teacher prefers. But then his teacher caught him stacking, and advised him that when you split instead of stack it's much easier to explain your answer (key to getting full credit).

Meanwhile, at Continental Math League practice today, I reminded kids that they can solve the multi-digit calculations using any method they want. The first few times they opted for stacking, I asked why.

"It's much faster," said one. "With splitting you have to keep splitting and splitting, and then you lose track of what you're doing and forget what's going on."

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