Blog 11: Maths Tricks or Bad Habits? by Aidan Severs

Maths tricks are still alive and well and being taught in primary school maths lessons despite the recent  EEF guidance document on improving maths in KS2 and KS3.

We all know now that when you multiply by ten you don’t just add a zero. And we know why, don’t we? It’s simple. If you add a zero you’re adding nothing, therefore the number doesn’t change.

Try telling that to a child who has worked it out for themselves without you ever having to utter the forbidden phrase.

As primary teachers, as the EEF says, we need to model good conceptual understanding in all our maths lessons, rather than relying on tricks that work but don’t help children to have an understanding of the ‘why’ and the ‘how’.

Here are the 5 most common bad habits in Maths, maths tricks we are still teaching our primary school pupils, and what you can do instead.

Maths Tricks or Bad Habits? 5 Mathematical Misconceptions We Still Teach Pupils

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