Mental Math for the Middle Grades

While most students consider mental math a tiring and difficult task, it is an important aspect of learning. Mental math applies in almost all areas of daily life. For this reason, it is important for them to learn the basics at an early age. It is advisable to start with simple exercises and as they age and become good at these, the equations can then be more complex demanding the need for a more thought out process. For these reasons, it is important to choose mental math for the middle grades that is hinges more on mind games. Children from the age of 9 to 12 should cover this though those who are a bit slow at grasping this can also be included in the program.

Since it is a bit difficult for students in this age gap to grasp the dynamics of mental math, it is advisable to start with easy strategies, which built up with time. This is regardless of whether the equations involve multiplication, addition, subtraction or division. By following a sequence, students are able to come up with the right answers until eventually; it becomes easier to solve questions that are more complex. For instance, for students to solve 64 + 77 they have to break this down to 64 +70 +7 or alternatively break it down into 60 + 70 + 11. It is important to note that this requires the student to break down the numbers in their heads and then mentally put them back together.

A percentage of students in middle grade find it hard to calculate math mentally. For this reason, as teachers, it is important to find ideal teaching material that will aid in exploring some of the major ways to simplify this. This is especially true if they are battling with basic math problems. However, it is ideal to provide solid facts they can fall back on when handling computing math problems mentally.

Teachers should understand that teaching middle graders mental maths is a step-by-step process. It should involve asking equations that involve numbers or story equations. Students should also be encouraged to answer them uniformly until eventually they are all at the same par. Also important is to ensure use of the right material to teach them. This can be easy since there are several guides on mental maths designed to cater to these needs.


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