Melodiya99 Posted November 5, 2011 Share Posted November 5, 2011 (edited) Dd (turned 5 this week) seems pretty mathy...for example, when she was 3 and asked me to teach her to count to 100 we did it together 1 time and she says, "so counting to 40 is 10, 4 times, and 50 is ten 5 times" and seemed to understand how to multiply other smaller numbers. I'll often see her writing math equations just for fun or she'll come up with her newest revelations like, "I was thinking, that since there's 2 5s in 10, and 20 is 10 2 times, then 5 4 times must be 20." Now here's my dilemma: we started singapore 1a about a month and a half ago. We do it 3-4 days a week and we're about done, except for the subtraction of numbers over 10 (not ones like 19-3, but more the ones that cross 10 like 14-7). She Just. Won't. Do. It. She says they're too hard, but when I ask her similar questions orally she gets it if I anchor her first with a question like, 14-4, then ask what is 14-7 (she can do any number up to 100 this way, but only wants to do it in her head). I'm not sure if it's the pictures that bother her...even in the addition section she'd cover them up and absolutely refuse to look at them for help in figuring out problems. She insists on doing everything mentally. She also has told me multiple times that she really likes the pages where they just have problems all in a row without the pictures that you have to count or circle or anything. We have the c-rods which she likes playing with, and does almost every day, but she won't use them for math problems. We also have the multifix cubes and it's the same thing: yes for building with, no for figuring out problems. Should I just skip the section for now? She gets how to do it mentally...is it just too tedious maybe? She really likes the cuteness of the pictures and often colors them afterwards, but just doesn't like having to use them to figure out a problem. Any advice? EDIT: I guess I'm wondering if this is something I should just skip temporarily to play around with other math (we went ahead and did the last 2 parts of the book already) or just skip entirely and move on to 1b? I think she gets the concept, but I don't want her miss stuff. I also don't want to bore her. I hate this second guessing myself! BTW some of you will relate: even with all she's learning, we're doing spelling the other day and she wanted to number her words and wrote 8 out of 10 of the numbers backwards:lol: Edited November 5, 2011 by Melodiya99 Quote Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...

lewelma Posted November 5, 2011 Share Posted November 5, 2011 Have you considered dropping math, and just doing it orally in a more casual way. Make up stories with math questions in them, have your child estimate distances, double recipes, play with fractions. Play with numbers all the time, but don't do a structured workbook style program until she is 6. Then you could easily start with 2a. Ruth in NZ Quote Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...

freerange Posted November 5, 2011 Share Posted November 5, 2011 If that's the only area of difficulty, I'd take that as a pretty good indication that the level is a good fit. It's good to sometimes have an area of maths that doesn't come easily & beds to be worked at; it helps to prevent it being a huge traumatic shock when they hit difficulties in high school our college. If writing is a problem I would scribe for her. For breaking up the problem I would ask 10 - 7, then 14 - 7 and see if that way round makes a difference. Quote Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...

zaichiki Posted November 5, 2011 Share Posted November 5, 2011 Should I just skip the section for now? She gets how to do it mentally...is it just too tedious maybe? She really likes the cuteness of the pictures and often colors them afterwards, but just doesn't like having to use them to figure out a problem. Any advice? EDIT: I guess I'm wondering if this is something I should just skip temporarily to play around with other math (we went ahead and did the last 2 parts of the book already) or just skip entirely and move on to 1b? I think she gets the concept, but I don't want her miss stuff. I also don't want to bore her. I hate this second guessing myself! If it were me and my kid (and his strengths/weaknesses), I would continue on in the math, skipping this section, BUT I would give him one of the problems from that section on the whiteboard each day. And if he needed the scaffolding (14-4, then 14-7), I would give it to him. IMHO Age is irrelevent. If a child can see numbers in this way and can handle the math program (up to this point), age has nothing to do with whether or not you should continue or even HOW you should continue. It's all about how they think and what they can handle. And BTW We've done Singapore Math books out of sequence for YEARS. If there's an interesting topic later in the book that's unrelated to the place we're "stuck," we'll often alternate days in each section. I've also sometimes completely SKIPPED a review section (many times), but inserted it problem by problem into future weeks (b/c I doubt myself and want to *make sure* child gets review, even if he/she seems not to need it) or done it a month later. Singapore Math is easy to tweak. Have fun! Quote Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...

zaichiki Posted November 5, 2011 Share Posted November 5, 2011 For breaking up the problem I would ask 10 - 7, then 14 - 7 and see if that way round makes a difference. Singapore Math teaches that you would take away the 4 ones first, and then the remaining 3 from the ten... so scaffolding with 14-4 first and then 14-7 is more true to the method. Quote Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...

MissKNG Posted November 5, 2011 Share Posted November 5, 2011 :iagree:Singapore is easy to tweak. We skip around in the books. My big girl will get bored if we cover addition then subtraction in the same chapter. So we'll do the addition stuff, then do another chapter then come back to the subtraction stuff (for example). There's enough review (if needed) that it's very easy to get back into that original chapter. Don't be afraid to tweak to make the curriculum work for you! Quote Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...

boscopup Posted November 5, 2011 Share Posted November 5, 2011 Have you considered dropping math, and just doing it orally in a more casual way. Make up stories with math questions in them, have your child estimate distances, double recipes, play with fractions. Play with numbers all the time, but don't do a structured workbook style program until she is 6. Then you could easily start with 2a. Ruth in NZ :iagree: Honestly, I think my oldest (who used to come up with stuff like that on his own) slowed down when he started using a curriculum in school. I think he would have taken off even more if he'd been left to just play with math on his own. I'm glad I didn't do anything with him before he went to K at school. We had the most interesting van conversations as he discovered things like multiplication and adding/subtracting negative numbers. :D My middle son uses a curriculum now (just turned 5 this week also ;) ) because he does need the explicit instruction. He also needs the manipulatives. My oldest didn't need manipulatives and did better without them (still does). He is a more abstract thinker, which it sounds like your DD is. Just let her continue to play with math in her head, as that is clearly her strength! I found that when I started explicitly teaching HOW to do math in his head, my son lost his natural ability. So I really think that for the occasional kid, Singapore's "Hand them a method to think mentally" isn't necessarily the way to go. If they think of their own method, it's much easier for them, and I think it's more brain stretching for them to think of their own than to be handed it on a platter, kwim? When she's older, you can give her some alternate stuff, but at this age, I think it does more harm than good for some kids that naturally think of their own cool methods. Quote Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...

go_go_gadget Posted November 5, 2011 Share Posted November 5, 2011 I would keep going, but do a few of those problems (with scaffolding, if necessary), at the beginning of each lessons until she has it down. Working through mental blocks is something she'll need to be able to do time and again in math. Quote Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...

catz Posted November 5, 2011 Share Posted November 5, 2011 Have you considered dropping math, and just doing it orally in a more casual way. Make up stories with math questions in them, have your child estimate distances, double recipes, play with fractions. Play with numbers all the time, but don't do a structured workbook style program until she is 6. Then you could easily start with 2a. Ruth in NZ :iagree: For a newly turned 5, I'd just play with math for a year or even 2 if you want. Keep it fun and hands on. She can probably pick up at 2A and will likely start racing through from there. For the record, my 5th grader doing AoPS algebra didn't start Singapore until 2nd grade and he started at 2A. He had tons of the concepts ahead just from playing with it. He went to 2 years of PS and didn't learn any math there. Quote Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...

Crimson Wife Posted November 5, 2011 Share Posted November 5, 2011 I would encourage you to get the Right Start math tutorial program, Activities for the AL Abacus and the abacus as a supplement to Singapore. Like Singapore, Right Start is based on the Asian way of teaching math, but it's presented in a more "hands-on" way that is often easier for young children to grasp. If Singapore is mostly working for you, the full RS program would probably be overkill but the Activities for the AL Abacus is relatively inexpensive and will help you incorporate some of the RS way of teaching math into Singapore. Quote Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...

2smartones Posted November 6, 2011 Share Posted November 6, 2011 My not-so-mathy child learned multiplication and division about 2 years before he finally caught on to addition and subtraction. I tried everything I could think of, but I was only frustrating both of us. What finally worked was learning how to "share". So, if he were doing 8+6, he'd either share to make doubles (because doubles have always been easy), or he'd share to make one of them a 10. In that way, he can do mental math. When he tried working things out on paper or with rods, he'd end up in tears. Subtraction was the same idea, except that I used "borrow" rather than "share". I'd turn problems into stories, and I'd turn place values into people. (Little brother is only strong enough to carry 10 boxes, but big brother can carry 100 boxes, and mom can carry 1000 boxes, etc.) It'll come in time. Five is still young, even for a mathy child. Focus your time on having fun and reinforcing what she already knows. Perhaps step the multiplication up a notch so that she'll see how important it is to get the add/sub facts down. (Multiple step mul/div problems) Quote Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...

anabelneri Posted November 7, 2011 Share Posted November 7, 2011 It seems as if you've gotten some good Singapore-oriented responses, and that might be exactly what you need. I just wanted to mention that MEP also focuses on mental math; you'll find the beginning of subtraction under 100 in the first half of "Year 2". If you go to this page, then scroll down to "Year 2", the section labeled "pages 51 to 80" is probably the section you'd want for this. The worksheets aren't at all cutesy (so nowhere near as fun to color in) but it still might be a useful resource. Good luck! Quote Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...

jenbrdsly Posted November 7, 2011 Share Posted November 7, 2011 My not-so-mathy child learned multiplication and division about 2 years before he finally caught on to addition and subtraction. I tried everything I could think of, but I was only frustrating both of us. What finally worked was learning how to "share". So, if he were doing 8+6, he'd either share to make doubles (because doubles have always been easy), or he'd share to make one of them a 10. In that way, he can do mental math. When he tried working things out on paper or with rods, he'd end up in tears. Very interesting!!! From a Constructivist perspective, subtraction is the most difficult operation to truly understand and be able to calculate without traditional algorithms. The last school I taught at was a Constructivist school and we taught math like this: addition, multiplication, division, and then subtraction. Quote Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...

freerange Posted November 7, 2011 Share Posted November 7, 2011 Singapore Math teaches that you would take away the 4 ones first, and then the remaining 3 from the ten... so scaffolding with 14-4 first and then 14-7 is more true to the method. You need to be able to do both, since it then progresses to questions like 23-6, which is split into 23-20, 20-10 & 10-6. And in any case, being good at maths isn't about slavishly following an algorithm, it's about learning how to construct & deconstruct, to play with them & make them do what you want. Quote Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...

zaichiki Posted November 8, 2011 Share Posted November 8, 2011 You need to be able to do both, since it then progresses to questions like 23-6, which is split into 23-20, 20-10 & 10-6. And in any case, being good at maths isn't about slavishly following an algorithm, it's about learning how to construct & deconstruct, to play with them & make them do what you want. Actually, I must correct myself! My ds did this very lesson in Singapore Primary 1A for the first time today. Singapore teaches to "open a 10" and subtract from that, then combine the left over ones (from the ten) with the original ones. So... 14-7 is 10 and 4... subtract the 7 from the 10. Then combine the 3 and the original 4 ones. And you're right that it's not about following a specific algorithm! Singapore is all about teaching multiple ways to get the same answer. Tomorrow's lesson for ds uses a number line to guide subtraction by counting backwards. :D I used base-10 blocks with the SM lesson today -- to give ds a little hands-on experience with "opening the ten." Quote Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...

Melodiya99 Posted November 11, 2011 Author Share Posted November 11, 2011 Thanks for all your responses...really helpful! After a couple days of asking her a few problems orally at lunch etc., she seemed to be able to do it really well and can do any number up to 100. I think the problem was 2-fold...having to count everything out in the pictures was overwhelming to her (she has her number bonds down solid), and just an attitude thing since everything else in the book was so easy--just not wanting to have to think. When she started getting them right I asked her what she did to figure it out and she said, "Oh, I just thought about it and then I knew.":tongue_smilie: Actually, I must correct myself! My ds did this very lesson in Singapore Primary 1A for the first time today. Singapore teaches to "open a 10" and subtract from that, then combine the left over ones (from the ten) with the original ones. So... 14-7 is 10 and 4... subtract the 7 from the 10. Then combine the 3 and the original 4 ones. And you're right that it's not about following a specific algorithm! Singapore is all about teaching multiple ways to get the same answer. Tomorrow's lesson for ds uses a number line to guide subtraction by counting backwards. :D I used base-10 blocks with the SM lesson today -- to give ds a little hands-on experience with "opening the ten." So is this information in the HIG? Maybe I skimmed too quickly, but I didn't notice the text saying anything about opening a 10 (or any other method particularly...I did the nearest 10 method just because that's how I think, but didn't see it in the book). Opening a 10 seems like so many more steps than just subtracting part way and then the rest. Should I go back and teach her that way too? Is there a benefit I'm missing? Or just let her go on with her own way...she can do any number like 86-9 mentally quickly. I don't get the reason for counting backwards as a subtraction method either(again, it seems really slow to me). Quote Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...

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