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Has the Grid Method disappeared?

Discussion in 'Mathematics' started by clairev1985, Jul 18, 2018.

  1. krisgreg30

    krisgreg30 Occasional commenter

    The reason grid method has mainly died a death in primary is because it isn't an accepted method in KS2 SAT's so if they get the answer wrong and use the grid method they can't get a method mark where they can with the column layout.
    bevdex likes this.
  2. gulabjamun

    gulabjamun New commenter

  3. gulabjamun

    gulabjamun New commenter

    Like all trendy rubbish ideas they go as fast as they come!
  4. carriecat10

    carriecat10 Established commenter Community helper

    I have to disagree here. Maybe advice varies around the country but in my experience, many folks are still using the grid method as it provides a clear link between mental methods and the column layout and helps with understanding the process. There is no 'accepted method' for KS2 SATs. If the answer is incorrect, marks can be given as long as there is no more than one arithmetical error (place value errors are not acceptable). This would apply to the grid method as well as column method.
  5. krisgreg30

    krisgreg30 Occasional commenter

    There are people that still use it but the discussion is around why it doesn't seem to be used as often as it once was to which I was providing a reason.

    I'm afraid I have to disagree with this again as there are accepted and unacceptable methods for KS2 SATs and grid method isn't accepted. I can't find where I initially read it now but the DFE classed it as an inefficient method and so didn't classify it as one of the formal methods that can gain a method mark because they say there are more efficient methods.
    bevdex likes this.
  6. Vince_Ulam

    Vince_Ulam Star commenter

    Those who do are confused. One of the first things arithmetic taught to children is place value. Then teaching them a formal method which decomposes numbers is a retrograde step.
  7. Vince_Ulam

    Vince_Ulam Star commenter

    Quite right:

    Mathematics test framework National curriculum tests from 2016

    '6.4 Marking and mark schemes

    Partial marks will be awarded for correct working where the final answer is wrong but the pupil has used the formal method of working; where the grid method has been used for long multiplication or the ‘chunking’ method for long division, partial marks will not be awarded.
    Assets.publishing.service.gov.uk, accessed August 2018.
  8. pwc9000

    pwc9000 New commenter

    For the arithmetic paper the long multiplication questions are 2 marks. Correct answer = 2 marks regardless. In the case of an incorrect answer you only have a chance of 1 mark if you have used the formal column method.

    For the reasoning papers the method used to perform a calculation is not considered, the "method" marks are about whether the appropriate calculations have been chosen to solve the problem.
  9. adamcreen

    adamcreen Occasional commenter

    Carrie cat is wrong.
    nomad likes this.
  10. lancsHOD

    lancsHOD New commenter

    Does the same apply at GCSE. If pupils use the grid method and get the right answer they’ll get full marks...if they use the grid method and get the answer wrong they’ll get no credit for their working out?
  11. BG54

    BG54 New commenter

    I've seen nothing in the mark schemes for GCSE non-calculator papers that explicitly favours one method over another for long multiplication answers. While I can see the purpose of penallsing its use at primary level in order to push students to attain a good understanding of the column method I think it would be pointless to apply such a penalty in a GCSE exam when the candidate is unlikely to use long multiplication very often after completing their GCSEs.
  12. lancsHOD

    lancsHOD New commenter

    Thank you BG54. The reason I ask is that I now work as a private tutor, I have been out of schools for 4 years. Recently two different Y11 students have told me they’ve been told they have to use the column method.
    The first student is a grade 2/3. I think if she can get the right answer by grid method why change at this stage. She has been told to learn the column method. There are other things I can spend the time on like fractions, decimals, percentages....
    The other is a friend’s child, who felt embarrassed by the teacher, ‘WHY ARE YOU DOING IT LIKE THAT, didn’t your primary school teach you the column method.’ My friend said the teacher said she would lose marks if she used the grid method.
    My understanding has always been, correct answer equals full marks unless it’s an asterisk type question...
    I can understand a teacher seeing the column method as the ‘best’ method, time efficient. I suggested the friend sat down with their child and see if a short session would mean she can master column multiplication, she is grade 4 ish.
    My friend said if she gets the right answer won’t she get full marks...I said , I would find out! Interested in people’s knowledge of GCSE markschemes for 9-1 GCSE.
  13. adamcreen

    adamcreen Occasional commenter

    There is no rule about method for GCSE. (KS2 SATs are different). Any method will get method marks as long as it is clear.
    strawbs likes this.
  14. adamcreen

    adamcreen Occasional commenter

    And Carrie Cat is still wrong.
    nomad likes this.
  15. lancsHOD

    lancsHOD New commenter

    Thanks Adam, that’s what I thought but when a second pupil had been pulled up, I started to wonder if I’d missed a change.
  16. briancant

    briancant Occasional commenter

    Erm... aren’t all these techniques mathematically equivalent? When I multiply two 3 digit numbers together I have to perform 9 multiplications and add the results together. How I set that out is irrelevant. I have examined at A level and we always awarded method marks for equivalent correct methods. The Key stage two policy of marking a correct method as incorrect is nonsense and incorrect in itself (and I’m picturing Gove as the imbecile behind it). Of course chunking is not equivalent to long division so that’s fair. There are lots of examples of how and when a grid can help student's understanding and as pointed out there is a big crossover with algebra. If pupils understand that 23x34 is equivalent to (20+3)(30+4) it does help them expand brackets. I use a multiplication grid to explain completing the square. The skill of decomposing numbers is useful. A recent question in a practice GCSE paper asked students to show that a three digit number abc when reversed and subtracted (abc-cba with a>b>c) is a multiple of 99. The way to go was to write abc as 100a+10+c. So the skills gained from using the grid ARE useful. That being said when I multiply two numbers together I use the column method but as I say for me to tell students that this is correct and the grid method is incorrect would be wrong.
  17. adamcreen

    adamcreen Occasional commenter

    The KS2 thing is because Gove wanted a return to "formal" methods. And by formal, he means "like in the 1950s". Even though grid, Gelosia, short division and chunking are all perfectly mathematical. In fact, chunking is allowed for KS2, as long as the chunks are not all the same size.
  18. Bolter

    Bolter New commenter

    To be clear. All your year 7s and 8s should be fluent in the formal method. There are more multiplication questions than any other operation on the KS2 arithmetic paper (the easiest of 3 papers).

    I know first hand there is massive inconsistency in secondary with grid and lattice methods floating about. It’s such a mess and a blockage in the system - wasting time that should go on other areas.
  19. adamcreen

    adamcreen Occasional commenter

    I don't think many Year 6 students would describe it as easy! It's got no reasoning, it's true, but the time given and the number of questions asked make it a very stressful paper indeed.
  20. sammiloczy

    sammiloczy New commenter

    It is most definitely used in secondary and utilised in many other topics (like algebra). If there is discussion as to partitioning and why it works it actually makes a lot more logical and conceptual sense than column methods, and helps link concepts of area if taught correctly. I also find it helps to organise information (in a very similar way to how bar modelling is fantastic).
    I have year 7s struggling and getting multiplication wrong because column methods can be too taxing on working memory because they are told they aren't allowed to use grid methods at secondary. Whichever method works for them is the one that should be used! I only ever multiplied using the grid method for similar reasons right the way through to my degree so I don't see the harm if it is taught as a logical method instead of a "trick"!

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