How do you make grownups re-learn basic maths?

2007-11-15 13:20:00

This semester, the didactics course that's part of Analysis 1 focuses on the teaching of basic maths to children. What kind of troubles do they run into? What are common mistakes they make? How does learning maths even work?!

Of course it's a bit hard for a bunch of grownups to sympathize with the issues kids run into. Adults have been calculating things in their heads for decades and everything's become an autoamtic process.

8 + 5? The answer "13" automatically pops up in my head. No need to even think about it. 2 x 20? Boom! "40".

So how do you make adults relive their days of learning basic maths?

By making them do maths in base-8, ie octal counting.

Using the classic method known as the Land of Okt (het land van Okt), aspiring teachers are introduced to the problems of learning maths. We're using a book published by APS, though there's also a book dedicated to this specific subject.

I have to say that it's an interesting and somewhat frustrating experience. It feels odd break down addition and multiplication into steps again. Ie: 3 + 9 = 3 + 5 + 4 = 14. Or: 4 x 5 = 2 x 12 = 24. Don't even get me started about fractions :D

Yeah... Good stuff! If you're curious to see some of the assignments we're doing, check the Wiki page for week 1. tags: , , ,

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