Understanding place value is important because it helps you understand the magnitude of numbers. Because of place value we know 30 is 10 times bigger than 3 which is a hundred times bigger than 0.03. This would not have been possible with Roman Numerals as they do not have a decimal point, or zero for that matter. Egyptian numerals evolved to include unit fractions but with their complex hieroglyphs place value was still in its infancy.
In secondary school mathematics the place value table underpins so many fundamental mathematical concepts. For students to begin to appreciate the size of a number or how to write numbers in words they need to have a secure understanding of its application.
At the start of every school year I like to go back to using the place value table with Year 7 and Year 8 students.
With Year 7s we use it to:
With Year 8s we use it to:
Demonstrating student progression during a mathematics lesson is about understanding the learning objective and breaking that down into explicit success criteria. Using Success Criteria Take, for example, a lesson on calculating the area of compound rectilinear shapes. The intended learning objective was written on the main whiteboard. Success criteria were used to break down the individual […]
Plotting and interpreting conversion graphs requires linking together several mathematical techniques. Recent U.K. examiner reports indicate there are several common misconceptions when plotting and interpreting conversion graphs. These include: drawing non-linear scales on the x or y axis, using the incorrect units when converting between imperial and metric measurements, taking inaccurate readings from either axis not […]
When calculating the volume of a pyramid we can substitute the values of the length, width and perpendicular height into the formula V = 1/3 lwh. In my experience this is often provided for the students with little explanation as to why a volume of a pyramid is exactly one third the volume of a […]