Tuesday, May 06, 2014

Time to Stop

Today I started teaching E how to multiply and divide decimals.
I knew that he had a strong foundation with his multiplying and dividing so it shouldn't be a problem.
And he did great. Picked it up very quickly.
But there comes a time when a student has reached their limit for the day and I should have seen the signs.
He was looking at his fingernails .... getting up to play piano between questions ..... humming a song. But nooooooo, I wanted to do one more example.
And then this happened.
Me: So you've dealt with the decimals now just go ahead and divide. Sixteen divided into 2 is....?
E: 1.
Me: Well, no. Look at it. Sixteen things divided into 2 groups....you've done this a million times.....how many in each group?
E: 1.
Me: How are you figuring that? Look at this picture. See the groups? OO See the things? |||||||||||||||| Now divide them equally into the two groups.
E: There would be 8 in each group.
Me: Right. So 16/2=?
E: 1.
Me: Where are you even getting the 1 from? I see a 16, an 8 and a 2. Where is there a 1?
E: Well there's one sixteen.
Me: (Silence). Oh. Kay. Erase the 1.
E: Should I put an 8 there then?

Aa-a-a-a-a-and we're done math for the day.

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