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Q&A #17459

Teachers' Lounge Discussion: Who "invented" touch point math?

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From: Manga Lito <mangalito@gmail.com>
To: Teacher2Teacher Public Discussion
Date: 2008060522:57:46
Subject: Re: The Potential Dangers of Teaching Touch Math


Your argument is based on your opinion and experience, but no
statistical data.  The  evidence shows that students to learn best
with manipulatives because it involves multiple sensory experiences
for students.  While a separate physical item adds the ability to be
moved and touched and can be seen as adding more sensory components, a
dot is not just a symbol.  A dot, like the bees, circles or other
rudimentary figures our kids draw on paper represent value and
something that students can identify with.  I am interested in
statistical data that would support your theory, but I doubt there is
any.  I have seen touch point math as extremely successful.  Students
learn how to use it for their basic facts.  Do you see rote memory as
a better alternative.  I've seen students make a perfectly natural
transition to more advanced concepts.  I also see a far more positive
attitude towards math because of the touchpoints.  Affect plays an
important role in the learning process.  There are many important
concepts to be taught in math.  Why torture young 5 and 6 year old
children with countless hours of torturous memorization, when this
program is so much more efficient.  I seriously doubt that any of your
points would hold up to the scrutiny of   real research, but I am
interested to see, because I am teaching this program.

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