The adventures of a fourth grade teacher in East Central Illinois.

A Little More On Subtraction

A friend of mine who is a railroad engineer once commented to me that, outside the office, the most common type of math he uses is basic arithmetic: addition, subtraction, multiplication, division. This is, of course, the core of the mathematics I teach. The fact that arithmetic is so fundamentally important to the daily lives of nearly all people is why I am so very concerned about ensuring my students have a mastery of these mathematical concepts.

We are preparing to start working on more complicated multiplication, but before we begin, I wanted to make sure that my students had mastery of addition and subtraction. We spent Monday and Tuesday working on addition, and I saw a great deal of improvement among my students’ work. We moved on to subtraction yesterday and continued today.¬†Instead of just doing simple problems today, I decided to have the students tackle word problems that involved interpreting data on a graph.

I feel much more comfortable with my students’ ability to use these basic computational operations in their work. They will be taking a brief quiz tomorrow and then we are going to tackle multi-digit multiplication on Monday.


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