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subtraction observation lesson yr 4

Discussion in 'Primary' started by lucywag, Nov 19, 2011.

  1. Hi everyone!
    I am being observed teaching subtraction on Wednesday. I would like to use the number line method of counting up because the children need a mental stratgey to use and I think this would help them also. We will start work on it on Tuesday so they should have some idea of the method and how to go about it.
    On Wednesday there will (hopefully) be 2 adults in the room and the children range in ability from 2a-4c. I really need to make this a good lesson because in my last observation everything went wrong and I need to prove I'm not a completely rubbish teacher!
    Has anyone got any ideas for activities that will move the children forward, particulary to challenge the most able as this is a whole school focus.
    Thank you in advance x
  2. I am a little surprised that you seem to be introducing this method at this point in the term. What methods have they used so far this term? Are you sure that they have not used this in previous years?
    If this is really the first time they have come across it, then you might need to see how Tuesday's lesson goes before you put any real detail on Wednesday's.
    As far as activities go, I use games a lot when practising addition and subtraction - especially good if you have lots of adult help. No marking - just make sure the adult notes down who achieved and how. Extend to larger numbers for the more able. The Primary Resources site has some good ideas, although make sure you are completely clear about how to play the game first. Your school should have a good range though - chat to KS1 and the SENCO.
    If you are worried about your observation, think about what went wrong last time and then address those issues. You are not a completely rubbish teacher - everyone has bad days. Just make sure you are clear about your objective and how the children are expected to reach it. Chill and good luck.

  3. Me too! The school is completely changing the way we teach maths and apparently after years of follwoing Abacus to the letter they have finally realised it is not working!!
    We did a maths test a couple of weeks into the term in September and were told to use question level analysis to base all of our teaching on for the rest of the term. Hence, we haven't yet got round to subtraction in earnest yet.
    The children have used the method before but when referred to it last week after goign through a mental maths test I was met with 25 little blank faces and few "I THINK I remember that...!"
    Thank you for your advice, will go and see what we have in school games-wise!
  4. That explains it. I thought I'd got it all wrong as well. If you really want to reinforce that particular method within the session, then make sure the groups with adults are recording workings on w/bs. They can be rubbed off as they move on but the adults with them can correct any misconceptions and have a better idea as to who is confident with subtraction.
    Make sure your adults are clear with the method as well!!
    If there is a group working without an adult, I would probably get them to do more traditional recording so I could see whether they understood it - almost a traditional page of sums with the jottings next to it. At the end of the day they are practising a skill.
    Will you be thinking about other strategies as well?
    Missing number subtraction might be a good idea for your more able. Your less able could complete a colour picture by completing subtraction questions (and showing their workings).

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