Ray Girn at LePort Schools reveals the secret to learning math:
The “secret” of our approach is teaching math conceptually, first starting with a sequential, targeted introduction to concrete manipulatives, then enabling mastery through deliberate, focused, motivated practice, and then allowing the experience of efficacy through the application of skills in increasingly complex, real-life problems.
This is accomplished via a three-step process:
- We develop real understanding by using carefully structured manipulatives, and, more generally, by always progressing from concrete to abstract in a deliberate sequence.
- We enable each child to attain mastery of math facts, at his or own pace,before we expect him or her to apply those skills to more complex problems.
- Once a skill is learned, we explicitly teach mathematical problem solving, and advance, rapidly, to applying the skills learned to complex, real-life, meaningful math problems.
Read the full article Teaching Math Conceptually.