# DailyDirt: Doing Math In Your Head

### from the *urls-we-dig-up* dept

Math might not be the easiest subject for some students, but there might be different ways of teaching it that could make it more tolerable for kids. The more we learn about how our brains process math problems, the better we can teach ourselves how to tackle math education. There's a lot of concern over how Americans can compete in a global economy if our kids don't have some pretty basic math skills. Maybe some of these findings will help students pick up some much needed math skills.

- Learning how to use an abacus could actually be useful. Japanese students have demonstrated that using a mental image of an abacus (no actual abacus needed) can help them perform some incredibly fast mental calculations. [url]
- American kids don't do well on international math tests, but the bright side is that we're slowly learning what might be the best remedies. Understanding *why* kids don't do well on math tests is an important part of coming up with a solution, but looking at the bad test results is pretty scary.... [url]
- Doing a few algebraic word problems before bedtime might help alleviate some math fears in children. Or they could inspire math-related nightmares that haunt kids like Freddie Krueger. You decide. [url]

## Reader Comments (rss)

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Flattened/ Threaded)Wally(profile),Dec 3rd, 2012 @ 5:05pmThe abacus can help you do calculus and also help with converting different basseses of numbers to the standard Base 10 that we use.

Learning math is extremely important for most professions and to get through college quicker as some places use your SAT Scores to determine which gen-ed classes you need to take.

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Anonymous Coward,Dec 3rd, 2012 @ 5:26pm## bedtime math..

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Anonymous Coward,Dec 3rd, 2012 @ 6:39pm## Mental math

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KeillRandor(profile),Dec 3rd, 2012 @ 9:11pm## learning basic maths...

1) Learn how to count.

How many people or resources do you currently think are teaching people and children to count incorrectly/inconsistently?

For (an easy/quick) example: check a number wall chart somewhere and see if it counts from 1 to 10/100 or 0 to 9/99.

If its the former, then it's doing it WRONG - our numerical symbolic system functions as base-10:

0,1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9.

10,11,12,13,14,15,16,17,18,19.

20, etc..

We don't count from 1 to 10 - (we start with nothing/0).

Anyone who is taught or thinks in such a manner is already starting off on the wrong foot... Basic addition and subtraction becomes fairly easy once the numerical system is understood, with multiplication and division becoming easier with that foundation.

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McCrea(profile),Dec 3rd, 2012 @ 11:03pm## Old news

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McCrea(profile),Dec 3rd, 2012 @ 11:06pm## Re: learning basic maths...

I have fantasies of base 1, where we count from 0 to 0.

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Anonymous Coward,Dec 3rd, 2012 @ 11:11pmUnderstanding *why* kids don't do well on math tests is an important part of coming up with a solutionthey dont study hard enough !!!! 'do the math!!'

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Anonymous Coward,Dec 4th, 2012 @ 8:43am## Re:

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Anonymous Coward,Dec 4th, 2012 @ 6:54pm## Re: Mental math

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Jan 2nd, 2014 @ 11:48pm## Learn Mathematics

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