Special offer on subtraction

29th November 2002 at 00:00
To help Year 4 understand subtraction, I put pictures of 10 objects on a board, marked with their prices. These might be trainers, CDs, items of clothing, or anything else that children like buying.

These stay there for a week. At the beginning of each day, every child has to decide what two items they are going to buy. They have a certain amount of spend, say pound;100. Every day the prices change - one day it'll be cheap trainers, and the next, more fashionable, expensive ones. The idea is to get as much as possible for your money and to work out the sums correctly. We give them accounting paper to do their calculations.

When I do this with lower-ability children, I tend to use smaller sums of money and simpler prices - for example, pound;3 rather than pound;3.99. I give prizes for the one with the most money left over and the one who has worked it out best. The children really get into it and there are howls of delight when they realise they've got a bargain. And they've grasped subtraction by the end of it.

Daisy Harman, class teacher, Ravenstone Primary School, London borough of Wandsworth

Log-in as an existing print or digital subscriber

Forgotten your subscriber ID?

Subscribe

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