Math workshop for teachers

Posted by on Dec 6, 2022 in School News | Comments Off

Macmillan Education organised a workshop for school teachers on the Singapore Approach to teaching mathematics on 3 December 2022, at the India International Centre, Lodhi Estate.

Ms Reema Mithwani, Founder and Executive Director of QUBE-ED Learning Systems conducted the session as resource person. Ms Jayanti Dwivedi and Ms Shiwangi Tiwari, math teachers at The Indian School, attended the scintillating session. Representatives from 13 other prominent Delhi schools were present at the event.

The session focused on the Singapore Approach to teaching mathematics through CPA Math (Concrete, Pictorial and Abstract). This methodology ensures that students learn to think analytically as opposed to the rote learning of concepts.

Ms Mithwani explained that according to CPA Math, students develop a deep understanding of concepts when exposed to these 3 stages order-wise. CPA Math developed because students struggled to master the subject. CPA Math has steadily increased in popularity, gaining great success over the past 20 years.

Next, the resource person guided the participants through a series of activities to gain a deeper insight into this approach. She explained the following in great detail.

Learning number bonds helps students master math facts. It lays a strong foundation for how numbers work. Number bonds help students see how to split numbers and how to put them back together.

She then cited graphic dictation as a helpful tool in developing space thinking, attentiveness, accuracy, diligence, fine motor skills, and spatial orientation skills. First, draw the task on a sheet of paper, and set the start point. Then start to dictate the direction and the number of cells till the line closes.

Ms Mithwani explained the stringy quads to the participants asking them to stretch the string out so that each of them was left holding a corner to make a quadrilateral with just one, two, or four lines of symmetry.

She further explained that the bar model was a visual strategy to help solve number problems using different-sized rectangles to represent numbers. The rectangles or bars are proportional to present the large number in a problem with a corresponding larger bar. It will enable the students to understand what happens when using/applying formulas instead of merely following the steps.

The box method is an alternate method to multiplying two and three-digit numbers. Instead of stacking numbers and remembering placeholders, the box method expands the numbers and uses addition. The box method breaks multiplication down to its foundational addition skills and removes the need to remember all the tedious rules that come with the traditional methods.

Another engaging activity was What’s my place? It will help students understand the place value of a digit in a number as the value it holds in that place in a number. In this activity, Ms Mithwani advised assigning a place value to each colour block according to the instructions given in the question.

Lastly, she introduced table patterns to help learn tables by identifying patterns formed by multiples.

Ms Mithwani concluded with the assured statement that these activities would enable children to become confident problem solvers and more interested in mathematics.

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