Maths - Trouble with double maths

7th September 2012 at 01:00

What it's all about

Spot and solve pupils' maths problems with More Trouble with Maths, the follow-up book to The Trouble with Maths, writes Craig Barton.

The books are written by former teacher Steve Chinn. They are guides to identifying and diagnosing difficulties with maths, including dyscalculia and mathematical anxiety, and offer practical advice for helping learners with numeracy difficulties.

The issue I always have with academic research, no matter how credible its findings, is that the recommendations are rarely accompanied by practical resources and ideas that will make an immediate difference in the classroom. I am delighted to say that these two books do exactly that.

In More Trouble with Maths, Chinn provides research evidence and tests to photocopy for identifying crucial mathematical difficulties that are prevalent in schools. Amid the coverage of conditions such as dyscalculia, there are fascinating sections about learners' struggles with estimation and the crucial impact of short-term memory.

All these research findings are complemented nicely by The Trouble with Maths, where the focus is very much on practical solutions and strategies. My favourite part is the final section on fractions - a notoriously problematic topic for many pupils. The author pulls apart common approaches to teaching fractions, explaining clearly the misconceptions and difficulties to which they may lead. He then offers an alternative approach, including addressing multiplying fractions through paper folding.

These two books make fascinating reading, but more importantly I know they will have a long-term, positive effect on my teaching and my understanding of the difficulties many learners face with mathematics.

Subscribe to get access to the content on this page.

If you are already a Tes/ Tes Scotland subscriber please log in with your username or email address to get full access to our back issues, CPD library and membership plus page.

Not a subscriber? Find out more about our subscription offers.
Subscribe now
Existing subscriber?
Enter subscription number

Comments

The guide by your side – ensuring you are always up to date with the latest in education.

Get Tes magazine online and delivered to your door. Stay up to date with the latest research, teacher innovation and insight, plus classroom tips and techniques with a Tes magazine subscription.
With a Tes magazine subscription you get exclusive access to our CPD library. Including our New Teachers’ special for NQTS, Ed Tech, How to Get a Job, Trip Planner, Ed Biz Special and all Tes back issues.

Subscribe now