Division Strategies and Algorithms: Great Guided Math Lessons

Posted on September 19, 2011. Filed under: Assessment, Common Core, Common Math Errors, Digital Learners, During the Guided Math Lesson, Elementary math, Guided math, Manipulatives, virtual manipulatives | Tags: , , , , , , , , , |

Can you show your thinking about 250/50 in more than one way?  What about your students? Can they discuss this problem with numbers, words and pictures?

Division with Base Ten Blocks

Division with Virtual Manipulatives

More Division with Virtual Manipulatives (I would use real base ten blocks and then show the process with virtual manipulatives).

Area Model

Partial Quotients


Short Division (Notice the use of her language?  How could you help describe this process by using language that is descriptive of the actual place of the numbers?)

Be sure to look at all the Schultz videos on different strategies and algorithms for division (scroll all the way down).  Also take a look at the other posts on strategies and algorithms in this series on operations.  I always encourage teachers to do this type of work in small guided math groups so that students can get a chance to explain their thinking and listen to the ideas of others.  Also remember that the new math common core is encouraging us to build a repertoire of strategies and algorithms for the basic operations.  Of course, teach the traditional algorithm as well, but teach it with conceptual understanding as well as procedural fluency!

Happy Mathing,

Dr. Nicki

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2 Responses to “Division Strategies and Algorithms: Great Guided Math Lessons”

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Teachers still need to use manipulatives to model division before moving to these strategies, right? Too often teachers abandon the manipulatives too quickly and go directly to an algorithm. I’m not sure students have the time to build the conceptual understanding of dividing unless they use a manipulative or draw a picture to represent the problem. It is difficult to convince teachers in 4th and 5th grade that manipulatives are necessary for teaching division, and it is good mathematical teaching practice. This resource is so comprehensive. Gracias.

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