Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Fact Fluency

Fact Fluency

The debate of whether students should know basic facts from memorization or through automaticity is always at the forefront in math class with teachers.  This is the expectations with fact fluency in Common Core for  grades K-5:

               K- Add and subtract within five
                1-Add and subtract within 20, demonstrating fluency for addition and                          subtraction within 10
                2-Add and subtract within 20 using mental strategies. By the end of                            Grade 2, know from memory all sums of two one-digit numbers.
                3-Multiply and divide within 100. By the end of Grade 3, know from
                   memory all products of two one-digit numbers. Add and subtract 
                   within 1000 using strategies and alogrithms based on place value, 
                   properties of operations, and/or the relationship between addition and
                4-Add and subtract multi-digit whole numbers
                5-Multiply multi-digit whole numbers

 Some people think memorization would be easier.  Not true!! "Kamii (1985) compared two first-grade classrooms in the same school. In one, the teacher focused on relationships and worked toward automaticity. In the other, children memorized facts with the help of drill sheets and flash cards. The children in the classroom in which automaticity was the goal significantly outperformed the traditionally taught students in being able to produce correct answers to basic addition facts within three seconds—76 percent compared with 55 percent."  This leads teachers to thinking and planning lessons not based on memorization, but lessons that involve number sense and practice. In this article, Learning Strategies for Addition and Subtraction Facts: The Road to Fluency and the License to Think, Lisa Buchholz, reiterates the importance of teaching number sense and strategies as an everyday practice. I truly am with her on this belief. My second grade class has been learning the relationship between addition and subtraction with two-digit and three-digit numbers. I have seen students eyes "light" up when relating addition and subtraction. However, during our class we do have a time for Fact Fluency Fun through games. Yes, we play many games to practice strategies, as well as, help us practice our fact fluency. Yes, we do use flash cards, dice, Bingo, Around the World, and play Addition War and Subtraction War with cards. However, our most favorite game is Scoot. My school also has a fact fluency initiative in which I must follow that includes timed-tests. Students are given a variety of addition and subtraction equations and are timed for two minutes each week. Rewards are given for those that reach their goal. This in only one way we practice the Common Core Standard 2.NBT.5 Fluently add and subtract within 100 using strategies based on place value, properties of operations, and/or the relationship between addition and subtraction.

 Here is a link with a Fact Fluency Scoot!

How do you practice and/or incorporate fact fluency?

Be sure to check out my blog for units, games, problem-solving, and more fact fluency!

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