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Topic: language of division
Replies: 9   Last Post: Jan 13, 2005 5:49 PM

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Posts: 354
Registered: 12/6/04
Re: language of division
Posted: Jan 13, 2005 5:49 PM
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kalanamak@qwest.net wrote on 01/13/2005:

>The text I'm using on teaching children math forbids the use of "goes
>into" when talking about division. They say it is "meaningless". For the
>problem 427/62, they advise the child think aloud along the lines of
>1) can 6 tens and 2 ones be subtracted from 4 tens and 2 ones? No. Can 6
>tens and 2 ones be subtracted from 4 hundreds and 2 tens? Yes. How many
>times? etc..
>2) How many groups of 62 can I make out of 427 objects?
>Is this proper or farfetched? If the above is farfetched, is "goes into"
>still commonly used, or, if not, what is used?
>I am not clear from the text how the child goes about answering the 'how
>many times' or 'how many groups' question. Trial and error? Estimation
>and best guess first?

"Goes into" is commonly used, although maybe somewhat imprecise. Your
interpretation of "how many groups of" number1 "are contained in" number2, is
much better. Now at least you could use the simple concept of division, which
is repeated subtraction.

Some children drift away from detailed attention to place value, so when they
may try to learn the division algorithm of long division, they may need careful
detailed, and guided help. Not clear, is whether this is about some children,
or about few children.


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