ERIC Number: ED214652
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1981-Nov
Reference Count: N/A
Kindergarten and First-Grade Children's Strategies for Solving Addition and Subtraction Problems in Abstract and Verbal Problem Contexts. Report from the Program on Studies in Mathematics. Technical Report No. 583.
Blume, Glendon W.
The purpose of this study was to describe and compare kindergarten and first-grade children's performance on addition and subtraction problems presented in two contexts: verbal (in which problem data were linked to physical referents such as objects or people and their actions), and abstract (in which no such links to physical situations occurred). Fifty kindergarteners and 54 first-graders were individually interviewed in mid-year to observe their solution strategies and errors on 12 abstract and 12 verbal addition and subtraction problems. The kindegarten problems contained sums and minuends less than 10. For first-graders, the sums and minuends ranged from 6 through 15. All problems were based on the open sentences a+b=?, a-b=?, and a+?=c. Upon completion of the problems, subjects in each grade were clustered according to the solution strategies they employed and according to the types of problems they could solve. Results indicated that verbal and abstract problems were of equal difficulty for subjects in both grades. Although kindergarteners used essentially the same strategies to solve verbal and abstract problems, first-graders exhibited less frequent use of concrete representation strategies on abstract than on verbal problems. Subjects in the two grades committed essentially the same types of errors, although the frequency of occurrence of most errors was lower at the first-grade level. At both grade levels a variety of individual differences were evident in the types of strategies subjects used and the types of problems they could solve. (Author/MP)
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: National Inst. of Education (ED), Washington, DC.
Authoring Institution: Wisconsin Center for Education Research, Madison.