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-   -   DH & I have a difference of opinion... would love your insight! =) (x-posted) (http://www.justmommies.com/forums/f32-homeschooling/1897510-dh-and-i-have-difference-opinion-would-love-your-insight-x-posted.html)

~InHisHands~ March 4th, 2010 04:53 PM

DH & I have a difference of opinion... would love your insight! =) (x-posted)
 
Okay, so we were discussing the fact that a kid we know has to memorize addition tables (much like multiplication tables)...

1+1=2
1+2=3
...
etc, etc, etc

And is given speed drills on them so he has to have them memorized & be able to pull them from his head QUICKLY. Which of course, I honestly think is kinda ridiculous. If you can add on your fingers, that's good enough. Who cares if they are memorized. We didn't memorize them back when I went to school & I have always made straight A's in math... ALWAYS & will honestly sit here & tell you I still use my fingers to this day sometimes. DH is the opposite & insists they SHOULD be memorized. :lol: What are your thoughts? ^_^

hiskid1324 March 4th, 2010 05:20 PM

Re: DH & I have a difference of opinion... would love your insight! =) (x-posted)
 
I think it is important to work toward memorization of basic facts (so addition and subtraction facts to 18, multiplication and division through 12's). I had the hardest time with multiplication and division, and quite honestly, for whatever reason the memorization didn't really click until I was being a teacher's assistant for gr. 3/4, LOL! I sure think it would have been a good thing if I had known my facts well before that though. DH can calculate tons of things in his head because he knows his multiplication and division so thoroughly, and I sit here sometimes having to count things on my fingers. *sigh* Funny thing? I'm better in math generally than he is... so I think it is also important that concepts be understood (which is where the 'if they can count on their fingers they're fine' part comes in). I often end up explaining to him why things beyond basic facts work as they do, but he can do the calculations faster than I can. I guess we balance each other well, huh? :)

Anyway... until 3rd grade I'd be happy if my kid could show me how they got an answer in adding/subtracting, but I'd want them to have them memorized by 4th grade. Similarly, multiplication, except I'd want the memorization probably by 6th grade latest.

dalynnrmc March 4th, 2010 09:06 PM

Re: DH & I have a difference of opinion... would love your insight! =) (x-posted)
 
I agree with PP - my hubby can calculate crazy fast in his head because he has his facts memorized. For me, they taught me how to count dots on the number and I feel it has done me a HUGE disservice. :/

With my kids, we work on concept until I'm SURE the concept is mastered, and then work on memorizing facts. Occasionally we go back and make sure the problems are still able to be worked with blocks or something, and we continue the entire time with word problems, but after a certain point it's about memorizing to make the NEXT step easier.


Maybe it's not necessary, but I really think it will make higher maths easier. Lots.

BensMom March 4th, 2010 09:38 PM

Re: DH & I have a difference of opinion... would love your insight! =) (x-posted)
 
I'm with your hubby. (Sorry... don't hate me! :lol:) I had to memorize them as a kid and didn't know until recently that some didn't learn that way, AND that some publishers don't teach it that way anymore. That's why I love R&S so much. Ben has struggled with facts all year long. He knew "how" to add/subtract, but he didn't have the mental math speed down until we started R&S. Now he's up to his 5 fact families, and he's able to do 28 problems in 2 minutes. He's doing amazing with it. Really. I love R&S. I was going to go with Horizons next year after playing catch-up this semester, but now I'm sold. We'll do R&S grades 2 and 3 next year (which is the equivalent of Horizons 2, because R&S is a slower curriculum). I love the old-school way of teaching math. For now, I'm still supplementing with Abeka because he loves fractions and stuff so much, but in the future, we'll probably just stick with R&S until we switch to Life of Fred (and if LoF doesn't work out, we'll use Saxon... I think he'll love LoF, though, based on how he learns for now).

AmAnDaMo March 5th, 2010 05:56 AM

Re: DH & I have a difference of opinion... would love your insight! =) (x-posted)
 
Once the child truly understands what they're doing when they're adding and subtracting, I do think it's important to memorize facts. That's what is lacking in many public schools today, and why so many kids do so poorly in math.

mater bibit March 5th, 2010 08:01 AM

Re: DH & I have a difference of opinion... would love your insight! =) (x-posted)
 
I agree with the others.

Tweetybabies March 5th, 2010 01:23 PM

Re: DH & I have a difference of opinion... would love your insight! =) (x-posted)
 
I'm kinda in the middle. I don't believe in memorization of the basic facts for the memorization alone. I want my kids to understand the concept behind the addition and subtraction. I don't mind the finger adding, in the beginning. But the more frequently they do math problems, the more they see a pattern and begin to remember the basic math facts.

I do math drills with my son. I give him a sheet of addition or subtraction problems and he tries to beat the clock. He loves it when he can. And when he can't, he'll just try better next time. I don't make him simply recite math facts just so he can do it. There's no meaning behind it then.

I hope that makes sense! :unsure:

BensMom March 5th, 2010 01:36 PM

Re: DH & I have a difference of opinion... would love your insight! =) (x-posted)
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Tweetybabies (Post 19329811)
I hope that makes sense! :unsure:

Yes, it does. I think facts should be "learned" rather than "memorized". When you learn something, you know the how's and why's, and you don't forget it. When you memorize something, you forget it or don't know how to use it in a different context.

mom2mande March 5th, 2010 07:09 PM

Re: DH & I have a difference of opinion... would love your insight! =) (x-posted)
 
I agree they should be memorized but don't like the speed drill idea. Some kids do great under pressure but for others it can just be frustrating and in turn they get ones wrong that they normally wouldn't have. My 3rd grader has most of his mult. ones memorized but my 5th grader still struggles with a few. It will come, just at different paces.

~InHisHands~ March 6th, 2010 03:12 AM

Re: DH & I have a difference of opinion... would love your insight! =) (x-posted)
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by BensMom (Post 19320827)
I'm with your hubby. (Sorry... don't hate me! :lol:)

:lol:

Quote:

Originally Posted by Tweetybabies (Post 19329811)
IBut the more frequently they do math problems, the more they see a pattern and begin to remember the basic math facts.

See this is EXACTLY how I feel. The more you use it, you WILL memorize it w/o the stupid speed drills. And we are talking about addition tables here... not multiplication tables. I whole-heartedly agree that we should memorize the multiplication tables... it's the addition tables that I don't agree with.

This all came about b/c of a friend's son (who I am about to start tutoring BTW :) Which is GREAT b/c it's gonna give us a little bit of extra money to use for Austin's curriculum next year)... he's in 4th or 5th grade (at a private Christian school & may be even younger than 4th or 5th... I'm not good with looking at someone & telling their age :blush:). Anyway, the kid knows how to add & is doing well in math until the speed drills. He is failing the speed drills & thus needs a tutor. IMHO, he obviously knows how to add... that's good enough. Especially when I think of myself... no I'm not a human calculator like my husband b/c I never memorized them but then again I'm a visual learner... always have been & I have to actually visualize it or write it on paper... that's just who I am. And not to brag but I'm VERY good at math (always have been) even though yes, I'm a little slower at getting the answer & I NEVER memorized addition... multiplication, yes; addition, no.

broxi3781 March 6th, 2010 08:23 AM

Re: DH & I have a difference of opinion... would love your insight! =) (x-posted)
 
I was never taught to memorise addition and subtraction facts - we were taught to memorise times tables. I learned addition with manipulatives first, so it was really easy, two marbles plus three marbles etc... at any rate if you do it enough you eventually know the answers, so memorisation comes naturally.
I am teaching my son more or less the same way, but he also uses alot of computer games like jumpstart, and we do maths facts on a trampoline too.
He has just turned five and has a the now answers basic addition facts without thinking and is starting on the subtraction, so I'm sure he will get there on his own. If he doesnt though, then we will learn all the subtraction facts before going on to multipication.
I do find that being able to add easily in my head is a great use in everyday life myself, like going to a shop and adding up purchases as i go, so i dont go over what i meant to spend, or so i notice errors quickly. I did find one xmas time that a garage we frequented had an error in their favor over 2/3 of the time, of course they quickly refunded the difference and a few times other custmers would look at their reciepts and ask for refunds too. My husband would just come home with less change then he was meant to though and we stopped shopping there.

crstarlette March 6th, 2010 11:25 AM

Re: DH & I have a difference of opinion... would love your insight! =) (x-posted)
 
I see tha value in being able to recall the facts quickly and so I think speed should be a goal. I think that more complex problems could take a very long time if the basic facts aren't recalled quickly.

However, I don't think it is the most important thing. I think speed will come over time for those who don't accomplish it right away and I don't think you should wait to reach a certain speed before moving on the more difficult concepts.

I also don't know how I feel about timed tests for every child. My oldest son couldn't get through a timed test on paper with any kind of speed for the life of him, but if I go through flashcards with him and count how many he has gone through in a minute, there is proof that he can recall them very quickly. I'm not sure what the difference is ( I don't think the time it takes to write the problem would affect his score such to create the differences that are present in his speed in the different methods), but I won't make him "fail" at the paper timed test on a regular basis and ruin any chance he has of enjoying math.

BensMom March 6th, 2010 11:52 AM

Re: DH & I have a difference of opinion... would love your insight! =) (x-posted)
 
When we do timed tests, it's not a pass or fail, and it's not a time limit. It's a "do this as fast as you can, and then look at the clock to see how long it took." It's a contest against yourself, and it's really fun. Actually, I do the timed tests sometimes, too. Kids like to see their parents make goofy mistakes when pushed to their limits. :lol:

crstarlette March 6th, 2010 12:19 PM

Re: DH & I have a difference of opinion... would love your insight! =) (x-posted)
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by BensMom (Post 19338826)
When we do timed tests, it's not a pass or fail, and it's not a time limit. It's a "do this as fast as you can, and then look at the clock to see how long it took." It's a contest against yourself, and it's really fun. Actually, I do the timed tests sometimes, too. Kids like to see their parents make goofy mistakes when pushed to their limits. :lol:

Yes, seeing how long it takes you to do a certain number is for sure better than the Saxon Math prescribed timed test of seeing how many you can do in one minute (which I believe is later lowered to 45 seconds, as if they had mastered completing the sheet in one minute), since on their version it is obvious to my son just how few that is.

Either way it is a contest against yourself. My son's speed on the paper timed tests has not improved at all over the past... year? though his flashcard speed has. Seeing his time not get any better would be just as disheartening and no fun at all. Of course I don't give him the idea that he has failed at something; I think that is a natural feeling most people would have if they were unable to reach goals either prescribed by an outside source or self-prescribed.

The point is, if your child is no good at it one way, perhaps there is another way.

BensMom March 6th, 2010 01:52 PM

Re: DH & I have a difference of opinion... would love your insight! =) (x-posted)
 
Oh, I also should've mentioned... his timed tests are oral.

AmAnDaMo March 6th, 2010 02:41 PM

Re: DH & I have a difference of opinion... would love your insight! =) (x-posted)
 
We make it fun, too, and we use this:

Amazon.com: FlashMaster: Handheld computer for mastering multiplication tables that makes flashcards obsolete: Toys & Games

It's a bit pricey, but since both girls use it, it covers subtraction, addition, multiplication, and division, and they LOVE it, it was totally worth it.

MotherFrog March 6th, 2010 11:46 PM

Re: DH & I have a difference of opinion... would love your insight! =) (x-posted)
 
I agree with both of you because I had (and still have) a learning disability. I cannot retain math to save my life. (I can add, just don't remember the times tables)

I think whatever works for the kids to learn you should use. If can't give you the answer in the allotted time, they should be allowed to count on their fingers.

crstarlette March 7th, 2010 07:28 AM

Re: DH & I have a difference of opinion... would love your insight! =) (x-posted)
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by BensMom (Post 19339666)
Oh, I also should've mentioned... his timed tests are oral.

Do you say the problems out loud and he says the answer out loud, or do you have flashcards or something similar and he says the answers out loud? Just curious if you've tried both and one works better?

BensMom March 7th, 2010 11:57 AM

Re: DH & I have a difference of opinion... would love your insight! =) (x-posted)
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by crstarlette (Post 19344627)
Do you say the problems out loud and he says the answer out loud, or do you have flashcards or something similar and he says the answers out loud? Just curious if you've tried both and one works better?

It doesn't matter to him if it's written or if I ask it. He doesn't care either way. He does very little writing because of physical delays. (Although, i've seen amazing improvements on his number/letter formation over the past couple of weeks, but he's still not holding a pencil correctly ... I'm letting the therapist tackle that one... I haven't been able to correct it.)

in_mommy March 7th, 2010 05:10 PM

Re: DH & I have a difference of opinion... would love your insight! =) (x-posted)
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Tweetybabies (Post 19329811)
I'm kinda in the middle. I don't believe in memorization of the basic facts for the memorization alone. I want my kids to understand the concept behind the addition and subtraction. I don't mind the finger adding, in the beginning. But the more frequently they do math problems, the more they see a pattern and begin to remember the basic math facts.

I do math drills with my son. I give him a sheet of addition or subtraction problems and he tries to beat the clock. He loves it when he can. And when he can't, he'll just try better next time. I don't make him simply recite math facts just so he can do it. There's no meaning behind it then.

I hope that makes sense! :unsure:

That is how I feel. I think the memorization is important as well as an understanding the concept behind how you get that answer.


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