Teaching and learning tricky topics
Teaching and learning tricky topics

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Teaching and learning tricky topics

Example 1 High ability group

A group of confident, top set maths students decided to demonstrate division using a theme of a school sports day. Their characters were seven people running a race and getting thirsty. They had five litres of water to share between the athletes. As they were explaining their story to the teacher, a common misconception emerged; students often instinctively divide the smaller number into the larger number. In this case, the students explained to the teacher how they would share the water out between the people by dividing 7 by 5. Initially they could not see where they had gone wrong.

By using the students’ storyline of the sports day, the teacher asked them to explain how, with only 5 litre bottles of water, each of the 7 athletes could end up with more than one bottle of water. The students immediately realised their mistake and corrected their story.

Described image
Figure 7 Students working on sports day video based on storyboard

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