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From: Joan To: Teacher2Teacher Public Discussion Date: 2005031108:54:31 Subject: Re: Subtracting using fingers Yes.... it depends upon your son's age. I think he is in grade 2+, and he knows backwards counting. This thing helps in both addition and subtraction. Always ask your son to point out the biggest of the numbers in the sum given. Like is it is 12-4= Big number is 12. Now initially he will have to repeat this aloud or murmur it for him to get used to it....but then this works. Big number.....12 in my mind and 4 in my hand....(take 4 fingers in hand) If it is subtration, you count before 12, folding each finger count back 11, 10, 9, 8. So answer is 8. If it is addition you count after 12, folding each finger 13, 14, 15, 16. So 16 is your answer. This has worked in my first grade class in India.
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