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The Teaching of Arithmetic: Children's Analyses

by David Eugene Smith - 1909

The questions of mental and written arithmetic lead naturally to that of the analyses to be expected on the part of children. What is their object, what should be their nature? How extensively should they be required? As to the first, the only defensible object would seem to be that through these analyses a child makes it clear that he understands a particular problem or operation. That he acquires a habit of formal statement that is helpful in other lines of work, or that his memory is strengthened by learning set forms of analysis, has been too often disproved to require argument. To the extent that his analysis is really an explanation of his process there is an unquestionable advantage, since it enables a teacher to commend or improve the pupil's work. But how often is this the case? Indeed, how often should it be expected to be the case? Is it not the general experience that pupils too often memorize their analyses, and that teachers commend glib repetitions of their own words or those of the text-book, the matter being so imperfectly comprehended by the child that he is able to bear no questioning?

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Cite This Article as: Teachers College Record Volume 10 Number 1, 1909, p. 22-24
https://www.tcrecord.org ID Number: 10011, Date Accessed: 10/17/2019 7:50:54 PM

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  • David Smith

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