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ERIC Number: EJ1083953
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2015-Dec
Pages: 8
Abstractor: ERIC
ISSN: ISSN-1073-5836
Seeing the Implications of Zero Again
Ponce, Gregorio A.
Teaching Children Mathematics, v22 n5 p292-299 Dec 2015
Composing and decomposing numbers with base-ten blocks depends on children being able to see ten both as ten units and as one group of ten units (a long), cognizant that its value is the same in either case. Being able to see, or deciding when to see, an object or collection of objects as a unit is a key skill that children must develop to solve problems effectively with base-ten materials. This article describes an activity in which preservice teachers are reminded about the importance of unitizing when teaching children about place value. The author shares three strategies that help children understand how concrete and symbolic representations of whole numbers connect to standard algorithms. The common thread in these strategies is the use of whole-class discussions to build a strong conceptual understanding of, and computational fluency with, the base-ten place-value system, a key goal in any mathematics classroom.
National Council of Teachers of Mathematics. 1906 Association Drive, Reston, VA 20191-1502. Tel: 800-235-7566; Tel: 703-620-3702; Fax: 703-476-2970; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A