Some of us were taught to subtract using ‘borrowing and paying back’ as a method. Whilst this ‘works’ it does not make any logical sense as we do not ‘borrow’ and we do not ‘pay back’. What we actually do is ‘take’ value from one column and put it in another column. We do not change the overall value of the number; we just re-group or partition it to look different so that we can subtract each column.
Some adults have the impression that maths ‘has to be done,’ and imply that it is ‘hard.’ In fact maths can be really enjoyable! It’s satisfying when we get answers right but it’s also rewarding when we understand and can explain it to each other. Number wok can be like a puzzle that you solve. Families Learning Together presents many aspects of maths as practical activities and games to do together. We’re having fun and learning at the same time!
Multiplication is one concept but takes different forms as it gets more complex. Children need to understand the concept and principles of multiplication. For example, at a very early stage they know that 2 x 3 is two groups of three. It’s also the same as three groups of two. The different methods we use at each stage ensure that children build up their understanding of multiplication so they are quick, confident and accurate with it.
Many of us don’t have to use maths in our everyday lives very often, so the last time we did calculations might have been when we were at school ourselves! It’s hard to stay confident with skills that we don’t use or practise regularly. For some of us, the methods of teaching maths have also changed slightly since we were at school. This is because we want children to really understand maths as well as be able to do it. Families Learning Together helps adults refresh their knowledge and skills too.
Being correct in maths is clearly important, but it’s not the only outcome that we want for children. It’s really important to know why you get an answer right and how you got it right. This helps us be confident that we have got it right and that we can apply our skills to similar questions in the future.