Time to revisit - Division

Written by Peter Mattock Thursday, 14 February 2019

Edited and compiled by Robert J Smith @RJS2212

'Time to revisit... Division' is a workshop being run by Peter Mattock @MrMattock at #MathsConf18 on Saturday 9th March 2019, tickets still available.


Time to revisit…Division

In the latest of his “time to revisit” series, Peter Mattock focuses on division…
Division is one of 'those' concepts. Seemingly so simple, and yet pupils nonetheless can really struggle with division. In particular, pupils can struggle with the process of dividing one number by another or equally with identifying when a particular situation requires a division. In his "Time to revisit..." series, Pete has prepared a session that will hopefully help you think about your teaching of division.

Pete says. "Look at how we introduce the concept of division to support calculation strategies, but also to help pupils make sense of situations that require division to solve them. By examining different interpretations, supported by suitable representations and manipulatives, that are useful ways of being able to think about division."

In his session, Pete will take us on a journey through division. Starting with simple positive integer divisions, through division of negatives, divisions that result in fractions, divisions with larger numbers and finishing with division of both decimals and fractions. How we move pupils away from the manipulatives and imagery, and how the work with those can support moving to a purely numerical calculation.

And finally, by looking at practical situations involving division, and how, as teachers, we can use our deeper understanding of division to see why each of the contexts offered result in division problems.

Professor Emeritus in the department of education at the University of Oxford calls division 'The Dragon'. Those pupils who slay 'The Dragon' tend to go on to do well in mathematics; whilst those who don’t tend to struggle from that point on.

Ultimately, Pete's session is about supplying the weapons necessary to help as many as pupils as possible to slay this metaphorical 'dragon'.


You can see Peter Mattock speak about "Time to revisit... Division" during #MathsConf18 at the City Academy Bristol on Saturday March 9th 2019.

Don't forget in March we also have our 'FREE' Maths Teacher Network events in association with Oxford University Press and AQA.

We look forward to seeing you at our next La Salle Education Event if you don't already, follow us on Twitter @LaSalleEd

About the Author

Peter Mattock

Peter Mattock has been teaching mathematics in secondary schools for nearly 15 years. He is a regular presenter at mathematics conferences across the country, and his first book "Visible Maths" is due to be published in December. Peter is deeply involved in the work of his local NCETM Maths hub and has been accredited as an NCETM Secondary Mathematics Professional Development Lead and a Mathematics Specialist Leader in Education. Peter is also one of the first secondary maths teachers to take part in the NCETM Secondary Mastery Specialist programme, which is aimed to explore how approaches for teaching for mastery can be developed for the secondary classroom.

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