# would anyone be willing to offer a little help?

Discussion in 'Elementary Education' started by MrsChandler, Jul 25, 2009.

1. ### MrsChandlerRookie

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Jul 25, 2009

I know you're all super busy right now getting ready for the school year, but if anyone has a minute to spare for a preservice teacher i would appreciate it!!! :help::help::help:
My professor handed me back a lesson plan that I did. We were analyzing error patterns and misconceptions in math tests of first graders doing addition, and it was my job to write a remediation plan for the students who had misconceptions concerning place value. Meaning, when taking a horizontally presented problem and flipping it vertically to solve, they put the bottom numbers in the wrong place and essentially answer the entire problem wrong. The professor said i completely missed the mark and just told me to re-do it.
Can any lower elementary math gurus give me a word or 2 of advice. What would YOU do to remediate this misconception?

3. ### smalltowngalMultitudinous

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Jul 25, 2009

Did you ask him what it was he was looking for?

4. ### MrsChandlerRookie

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Jul 25, 2009

yes I asked her what I had done incorrectly and she said that using an example with decimals in it was inappropriate for a lower grade level (my bad!), but she didn't give me any clue as to how I should approach it. I mean, how do you tell a child "this goes here and this is why"??
I'm really stressed out about it, I have so many other things to finish before the semester is over (Thursday!), and I just don't know where to begin.

5. ### AliceaccMultitudinous

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Jul 25, 2009

I'm SOOO not an elementary school teacher!!!

But it sounds to me as though they don't understand the meaning of the equal sign (or, in the case of the vertical problems, the bar) If they're putting the sum where one of the addends should be, it sounds as though it's time to go back and look at what "2 + 3 = 5" actually means... that 2 of something was combined with 3 of the, and that the RESULT was 5 of them.

(Though when you said "place value" that's not what I thought at all. I thought you meant that the kids were adding from left to right, carrying from the tens to the units instead of the other way around.)

Does that help at all??

6. ### DHEConnoisseur

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Jul 25, 2009

did you have a problems with one or two digits?

7. ### Teaching GraceConnoisseur

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Jul 25, 2009

I'm thinking it sounds like they had problems with regrouping and not putting the numbers in the right places. Two words: GRAPH PAPER!!! Most math series have an appendix book that contains only the blackline masters of graph papers, charts, etc. In the book, there is typically a sheet of graph paper that has extra big blocks in it. I would recommend that there be a small group lesson on using the graph paper to line up the numbers in order to add.

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Jul 25, 2009

You have me flummoxed. You explain that they need remediation in place value, and then you describe what you mean by "needing remediation in place value" by saying that they put numbers in the wrong order (which I would assume is taking the bigger number away from the smaller number - an impossibility as far as first grade math is concerned - italicized for the high school math teachers benefit!)... I don't see how this error is directly related to place value. I'm really not sure what it is that you're asking in order to get help.

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Jul 25, 2009

Okay, first of all, first graders do 2-digit numbers (or smaller) when it comes to subtraction, and generally, they don't do regrouping in subtraction at all (that is a 2nd grade skill.)

When you say
do you mean they put the smaller number on top of the vertical equation, or that the inverted the place value of a 2-digit number?

Those are two very different problems and require completely different remediation plans.

If you could show the problem itself, and the incorrect response, I'm sure we would be able to help.

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Jul 25, 2009

On second thought, maybe you're talking about what teaching-n-2 referred to... Either way, I would need more details.

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Jul 25, 2009

My understanding is that this is the problem that is occurring with the students.....

Horizonally..... 52+31=83

Vertically...

52
+31
551

First and foremost, I think that the students need an additional lesson on place values. Once the students have a clear understanding of numbers and the place values that they represent, the students should then be given a lesson on rewriting number sentences vertically w/ the aid of a grid of some sort. We usually start off with a simple grid that has a line between the tens and the ones place. The place values (tens and ones) are even labeled at the top. Students should be shown how to line up the numbers in the correct place. Once a few lessons have been done using the grid, have the students rewrite number sentences vertically w/out the grid. Reminders should be given about lining up the numbers according to their place values. This would be my remediation plan.

12. ### MrsChandlerRookie

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Jul 26, 2009

Yes, this is the closest to the problem i'm having. The way they are setting the problems up is (an example from one of the kids' tests)
145
+34

getting an answer of 485 rather than 179. That's the best way i know how to describe the problem. I think saying "they're getting the numbers mixed up" was a misuse of wording on my part. My understanding is that this is a place value misconception, and that's what I was asking about. I apologize for not providing those particular examples; now that I reread my original post I realize how it may have only made sense to me. Thank you for all of your suggestions, I am going to get to work on this tonight, and if it is an allowed practice on this board, I will post my final draft if y'all would be interested to see what I came up with.
Thanks again for all of your advice, I will be here at the computer, so you are more than welcome to keep the ideas coming while i'm working on this thing.

:thanks:

13. ### MrsChandlerRookie

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Jul 26, 2009

I can't edit the post to make the problem I gave as an example show up correctly, but the way that I meant to type it was with the 1 directly about the 3 and the 4s lined up, with an empty space in the "ones" place.

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Jul 26, 2009

Looks to me like they don't understand place value - in that they don't know the hundreds tens and ones place so don't understand that you can't line up hundreds and tens in addition or subtraction problems. I say bring out the base ten blocks. Our every day math program has a T chart (with three columns) and there are several games using hundreds, tens, and ones and "building" numbers. Do a google search for "place value games" and see what comes up.
Also, you could have them do the addition or subtraction with the base ten blocks. Then they see that you can't do 35-100. (at least, not in the world of first grade math!)

15. ### MrsChandlerRookie

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Jul 26, 2009

Alright, I think Ive got it figured out. Thank you all so much for your suggestions! I was able to find some good strategies and game ideas, and the graph paper was an awesome suggestion. Thanks again, so much!

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Jul 26, 2009

I teach 2nd grade and there is a common problem with rewriting horizontal problems to vertical problems.

Ex. 23 + 57 =

They write it like this:

25
+37

They take the first numbers and put them on tp and then take the 2nd numbers and put them on the bottom. You will definitely get the wrong answer that way.

While the numbers are still horizontal I have them write a "t" for tens and a "o" for ones over every digit. This helps them line them up when they convert to vertical. Of course they have to know place value here to get this correct. I am not sure if this is what you are seeing but wanted to share anyways.