Andreas Marinos


294 pupils aged 8-9 years were given subtraction problems. Initially the pupils managed to solve the exercises using the usual algorithm (a-b=c). Simultaneously they made a representation of their solutions using 4 shapes which had been pre-agreed by the pupils and their teacher. Not only were the results unsatisfactorily worked out, but they were lower than the (also) unsatisfactory solutions given in the students’ efforts to solve the problems in the classical way. A teaching configuration was then prepared. After this an overall improvement was discerned in the majority of pupils, in subtraction problems.


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primary school, representations, subtraction exercises, using the usual algorithm

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