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Sunday, 1 November 2015

It Should NEVER Be About Whether It Is Right Or Wrong!

Just have to weigh in on this one. It has gone completely viral, and everyone is talking about it. How awesome is that? All of social media is united in discussing the commutative property of multiplication!

Why 5 x 3 = 5 + 5 + 5 Was Marked Wrong




I think this whole debate underlines our assessment issues in Math today. Educators should not be marking questions like this as "right" or "wrong".  The point of math questions should not be about discovering who is right and who is wrong, but about uncovering student thinking. That is why it is far better to provide feedback rather than a "mark" on a question like this. Better still, use it to promote a class discussion. It isn't social media that should be discussing this math question, but the very class that was asked it.

We don't know what the student was thinking here. For question 2 the child drew an array, we don't know how the child was visually looking at that array without having a conversation with him or her about it.

Let's stop telling children they are right or wrong and start asking them to tell us about their solutions! They might surprise us all!

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