Mathematics Tip - Levels 5 - 7

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Here are some topics of concern that may arise as you are working with students in Level 5 through Level 7.

How do the ‘Making Numbers’ exercises in Level 5 help our students?

‘Making Numbers’ helps students visualize the part/whole relationship and understand how numbers work together. Therefore, students can understand the basis of the inverse relationship between addition and subtraction. The concept of ‘Making Numbers’ plays a big part in school math textbooks; therefore, it is a good idea to explain to parents in advance how these exercises help students for their future learning.

Should Instructors coach ‘Adding 4’ differently from ‘Adding 1 through 3’?

Yes, these topics should indeed be approached in a different manner. At this point, students should start memorizing addition facts. Some instructors ask students to find the number that is 4 more, by asking the student to count the next, then the next, then the next, and then the next number. With this approach instructors will find that it results in finger counting and relying on drawings. By using flashcards and EMO, students can practice adding and develop their mental calculation skills while building up their confidence all at the same time.

Why is it important to observe how students answer addition problems?

Without keen observation, instructors may not be able to grasp precisely each students’ mastery level since it’s hard to recognize finger counting, murmuring, drawing marks, and other habits which should be corrected right away. Consequently, instructors should observe students carefully during 1:1 coaching or feedback sessions and give the right coaching to help students proceed in their learning without these habits.

What should I do when a student is struggling with adding one-digit numbers to 10-19 in Level 7?

If a student is struggling a lot, the Instructor needs to find the root cause as opposed to simply repeating booklets. The student may not have all his facts memorized. One good way to check this is by using a verbal test. If it turns out that the intuition hasn’t been developed fully yet, it is recommended to reinforce the addition facts that students haven’t fully mastered through Key & Note or flashcards This also means that previous progress was not determined properly. Instructors and Center Directors should be aware that it could give students the feeling of frustration later when trying to rush through levels. Therefore, always keep in mind that offering the Level Test should be done very thoughtfully and after plenty of observation.

Please refer to the ELU for more guidance on successfully instructing for students that are in Level 5 through Level 7.

Reference: Key & Instructors. May-July 2019.