Burn those answer books

20th June 1997 at 01:00
There is now further evidence to suggest that our methods of teaching some aspects of mathematics are not as effective as those of other countries, (TES, June 6).

One very simple solution might be to burn our answer books. Teaching mathematics is like a detective game; it is necessary to search for clues as to how the child is thinking in order to correct misconceptions. Using an answer book to mark work makes this search very much more difficult, if not impossible. Answer books help us prove the child doesn't understand, but do little to help us find out why. Wrong answers tell us so much more than correct ones and not only that two heads are not always better than one. So let's get detecting!

CAROLINE MIDGLEY Centenary Hall Pasture Road Embsay Skipton, North Yorkshire

Log-in as an existing print or digital subscriber

Forgotten your subscriber ID?


To access this content and the full TES archive, subscribe now.

View subscriber offers


Get TES online and delivered to your door – for less than the price of a coffee

Save 33% off the cover price with this great subscription offer. Every copy delivered to your door by first-class post, plus full access to TES online and the TES app for just £1.90 per week.
Subscribers also enjoy a range of fantastic offers and benefits worth over £270:

  • Discounts off TES Institute courses
  • Access over 200,000 articles in the TES online archive
  • Free Tastecard membership worth £79.99
  • Discounts with Zipcar, Buyagift.com, Virgin Wines and other partners
Order your low-cost subscription today