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 Subject: RE: MathDash Feedback Request Author: fjl Date: Apr 10 2012
Hi Max and Everyone,

I think I just got a much better handle on the issue that Max was highlighting.
I just finished getting an update from my student Matt (MathDash Team Captain),
who recently came back from a very informative discussion with Suzanne and
others at the Math Forum.

So the issue is that the game might be reinforcing a common misconception that
kids might have with place values in that they treat them as literals. I
indicated in the earlier post that knowing place values might be a good thing
for learning abstraction, but issue is that the game is still treating it as a
literal one. This is true, and this is something that we need to address.
Suzanne and Ray offered some suggestions to Matt during the meeting, and we will
consider those. One idea that I've been playing with in my mind from Max's
initial feedback is something like this this:

1) When you combine two numbers, they result in three addends that sum up to
the two numbers. (e.g. 5,7 -> 2,4,6)
2) If there is more than one possible combination of 3 addends that sum up to
the two numbers, then one combination is randomly chosen.

Optional Rule
3) One of the addend must be 1. (This provides some consistency in that I'm
guaranteed to always get 1 from the combination)

This is an important point, certainly much more so than I initially thought. We
will fine some implementation that we are happy from gameplay point of view that
addresses this important issue.

On Apr  6 2012, maxmathforum wrote:
> Hi Math Dashers,

I posted on your survey but also wanted to see
> if we could get a discussion started among all the smart Math and
> Tech folks here...

I'm wondering how best to handle the part of
> the game where two numbers are combined to make a new digit that's
> their sum.

If you combine 8 and 6 to get 14, the game currently
> gives you a 1 digit and a 4 digit. The 1 no longer represents a 1 in
> the 10s place with a value of 10 units.

To me, that seems like it
> might subtly reinforce student misconceptions of place value, and I
> wonder about other options:

-What if combining 8 and 6 made a 4
> and ten 1's?
-What if the user got to choose, quickly, what three
> numbers they wanted to partition 14 into?

What else? What are the
> pluses and minuses of each plan?

Max

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