Conference Proceedings

Using alternative multiplication algorithms to ‘offload’ cognition

D JAZBY, C Pearn, M Marsham (ed.), V Geiger (ed.), A Bennison (ed.)

Mathematics education research group of Australiasia | Published : 2015


Many students struggle to learn the traditional written algorithms introduced in primary school (Pearn, 2009). Heirdsfield (2004) states: “vertical algorithms dictate a rigid procedure, and do not lend themselves to encouraging students to manipulate numbers flexibly” (p.8). However, Westwood (2000) suggests that: children should have no problem mastering these procedures [algorithms] if they are linked as closely as possible with the more informal methods … that are typically used by children … difficulties arise if the processes are taught without reference to children’s prior learning or way of recording (p. 47). While many teacher publications (such as Randolph & Sherman, 2001) have advo..

View full abstract