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You are on page 1of 52

James Stevenson

MATHEMATICAL PERSPECTIVE

BY

JAMES STEVENSON

JUNE 2007

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TABLE OF CONTENTS

INTRODUCTION ..................................................................................................7

OBSTICLES TO LEARNING MATH-----------------------------------------------------------6

PURPOSE FOR STUDYING MATH: ..................................................................14

TWO BASIC RULES...........................................................................................15

LEARNING THE ALPHABET AND HOW TO COUNT........................................16

MODEL THEORY ...............................................................................................17

BREAKING PATTERNS .....................................................................................24

MULTIPLICATION ..............................................................................................36

DIVISION ............................................................................................................63

WHAT IS A FRACTION? ....................................................................................71

DECIMALS .........................................................................................................79

EQUIVILANTS ....................................................................................................81

FRACTIONS TO DECIMAL EQUIVILENTS........................................................83

PERCENT...........................................................................................................89

WORD PROBLEMS............................................................................................94

METRIC ..............................................................................................................97

BASIC GEOMETRY..........................................................................................100

ALGEBRA.........................................................................................................106

INTEGERS .......................................................................................................109

CONCLUSION ..................................................................................................113

COPYRIGHT ....................................................................................................115

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INTRODUCTION

I originally worked as a Petroleum Engineer for twelve years prior to entering the

teaching profession. My first teaching positions were in federal and provincial

prisons. As a result my approach to math is different than most and different to

the way that I was taught

When I first started teaching in the prisons, I would have students come to me

and prove that they have grade ten math yet they cannot do their multiplication

tables. My first response was to blame the school system for passing

incompetent people, so I would re-teach these students the way that I was

taught. We would make slow but positive progress and all would be happy

thinking that we were successful. After being released from prison, they would

re-offend and be back in prison again within six to eight months. This time when

I interviewed them, they had forgotten all that they had learned. Only this time I

would use the excuse that it was the drugs that made them forget every thing it

couldnt have been my teaching. Again the inmate would be released and would

return within the year. This time he may remember a little more but still had

forgotten most. What would we use for an excuse this time? The easiest excuse

was that maybe the student was just dumb and would never be able to do

math. After this happened many times, it was getting harder to convince the

student that this was not true. Slowly, it became obvious that the method that we

use to teach math does not work for many. So a different action was required. I

reverted to the inverse model theory. Instead of me teaching them the same way

over and over again, let them teach me how they do math. If the questions are

phrased correctly, all the students had a coping method of deriving the correct

answers. I started seeing patterns in their coping methods and I was able to

refine some of them for the students.

Math has been taught through memorization. We memorize: additions,

subtractions, multiplication tables, formulas and procedures as thousands of

unrelated rules and data rather than seeing how it is all related into one big

model. So stop memorization! Look for the patterns. Looking for patterns is one

of the few transferable skills that students will retain after you leave college.

Another block to learning math was the students patterns of failure and the

threats and stigma attached to failure. The brain just shuts down and goes into

protection mode rather than using its power to be successful and creative. Most

students have been told that they must work hard to learn math, so they work

harder and harder just to prove to them selves that math is hard. By showing that

math can be easy we can remove the fear that math has to be hard. The easy

lazy method is the only way many will overcome their years of learned failure

patterns.

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OBSTICLES TO LEARNING MATH

The mind can play many tricks on us. Some of the false beliefs and experiences

that we have had can prevent us from reaching our potential. To illustrate this

lets look at an example. If I were to lay a 2x12 plank that is 15 long on the floor,

very few people would have trouble walking from one end to the other. In fact

most would have no problem doing it blindfolded. Some could even do

somersaults from one end to the other. If we lifted the plank 3 feet off the ground

a few people would get nervous and may fall. Most wouldnt do somersaults. If

we raised the same plank 50 feet into the air, most people would be nervous

about crossing the same plank in any form. What has changed? The plank has

stayed the same merely the environment has changed. Fear of falling effects our

ability to succeed.

Another example is an experiment conducted at UBC in 2006. The purpose of

the study was to determine how certain beliefs effect health and whether certain

information should be released to the public. The experiment took 160 UBC

female students at random. They were broken down into four groups. Each

group was given essays to read prior to writing the math entrance exams for

UBC. The first essay talked about how females lacked a math gene that was

recently discovered.. The second group read about the fact that females did not

do as well as males in math was because of the environment in which our society

treats females. The third group read that there is no evidence what so ever to

indicate whether males or females will score higher on math exams. The fourth

and control group read an essay about comparing art. The first group that falsely

believed there was a gene responsible for their ability to do math score 50%

lower than the control group. These false beliefs were only held for a short while

and not reinforced. Imagine how false beliefs that are held for years and have

been reinforced for 20 years would effect ones ability to do math.

Another example many of us have is public speaking. We can talk to a friend or

small group of friends without any problems, But stick a mike and 100 people in

front of us and we act like we are just learning to speak. What is the difference?

We are saying the same thing. Fear prevents our ability for success.

We have all encountered bumps along the math highway. From these we have

created our own false beliefs that prevent us from doing as well as we should.

Some of these false beliefs have been reinforced by parents, teachers, peers

and of course our own feelings of incompetence.

Most of our problems are created because teachers insist that we memorize

adding, subtracting multiplication tables and division. This was the method that

they used to learn math but it is very limited in the understanding of math. Many

elementary teachers never understood the concepts of math. They were only

capable of memorization to pass tests. Those of us with poorer memories did

poorly and thus reinforced our false beliefs. Others may have been traumatized

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by other events while growing up. These events sapped our energy for learning.

An extreme example of this was one student that slowly learned to add but

absolutely could not subtract. We spent several weeks trying to subtract, Once

we started making progress, it would be totally forgotten the next day. In

frustration, I decided that he should learn multiplication. Over a moderate period

of time, the process of multiplication was accomplished and we proceeded onto

division. But division requires subtraction. Because it was called division he was

able to accomplish division without realizing that he was subtracting. The trauma

associated in his life with learning subtraction prevented him from learning

subtraction, yet he was able to learn more complex arithmetic because there

wasnt the fear associated with it.

We all carry some of these debilitating beliefs to some degree or another. We

must become aware of them and do our best to minimize or eliminate them. It is

like carrying around a lot of extra weight while climbing ladders.

Ninety-five percent of people will never ever use math once they have learned

arithmetic ( knowing how to add, subtract, multiply, divide and do some simple

fractions). The other five percent may use more math in the sciences and

technologies. And if they cannot do math in their head they will use a calculator

anyway. The discipline of math is merely a tool used to learn how to learn. It is

the study of learning the relationships between different factors or functions. It is

the ability to learn how to identify and solve problems. This is the invaluable

transferable skill that will be used in latter life. It can be used to exercise the

mind similar to working out in the gym exercises the body. Many enjoy working

out in the gym but nobody is going to apply for a job stacking weights. Pushing

weights is to the body as learning math is to the mind.

TWO BASIC RULES

With the exception of geometry, trigonometry and calculus, all math can be

broken down into adding, subtracting, multiplying, dividing and doing fractions.

Everything else in math can be broken down into these five principles. These five

principles can be broken down into two simple rules. One: knowing how to

count; and two; knowing how to be lazy. Being lazy and knowing how to be lazy

are two different things. To be lazy one must understand the relationship

between things and find short-cuts. If math creates problems for you which one

is a problem for you; knowing how to count or being lazy?

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LEARNING THE ALPHABET AND HOW TO COUNT.

Think about how children learn the alphabet and how they learn to count. Most

children can learn the alphabet and how to count to ten by the age of two and a

half or three. But most children cannot learn to count to one hundred until they

are five or six. The question arises; why is it easier to learn twenty-six characters

than it is to learn ten numbers? The alphabet is learned by rote and by rhyming

songs. They have no idea what an A, B", or a C are but they can rhyme them

off. To learn how to count to one hundred, one would have to learn one hundred

numbers until one realizes that they only have to learn to count to ten and the

pattern repeats itself. Young childrens brains have not yet developed the ability

to recognize the more complex patterns of repletion.

We all know and use alphabetical order to file material or look up information that

is filed alphabetically. However, if I were to ask, what is the fifth letter after P?

What is the letter and how did you find it? Now what is the fifth letter before P?

How did you find it? Could you use the same technique? Was it easy? If you

had to do this often how would you do it so you could do it faster? If I were to

ask what is the fifth number after 10 you would have no problem. And if I were

to ask what is the fifth number before 10 you also would have no problem. Why?

We see numbers in relationship to one-another. The relationship to the letters is

different, yet we all file things or look thing up in alphabetical order.

MODEL THEORY

We all use models, consciously or unconsciously, to predict an outcome or

measure something. This is what math is and does. Models can be useful and

good, but unless we recognize the models that we use they can be just as

limiting as beneficial. When I worked as a Petroleum Engineer, we used a

commonly accepted model to predict the life and productivity of and oil and gas

wells. The problem with the current model was that we only directly measured

two of about twelve parameters that affect the productivity of a well. We needed

all the parameters to do the calculations. Some parameters could be measured

from other sources and others had to be estimated. If we estimated correctly, we

received a good correlation; if not, we were out tens of millions of dollars. An

Engineer that I worked with stated that if the model can be reversed and still be

true then maybe it is true; otherwise probably not. He recognized that we were

forcing the data to fit the model. Inversely we should make the model fit the data.

He created a new model or series of models that gave much more realistic

outcomes.

The education model forces the students to fit the memorization model, rather

than creating a model to fit the student. Many students do not fit the educational

model, thirty percent of the students entering grade one do not complete grade

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twelve. Of the remaining seventy percent, half will forget most of what they

learned within two years. We as educators are trying to force the students to fit a

model that does not wok for them. We must rethink the educational model to fit

the students rather than the other way around.

Most of our students have had bad experiences with math and they have not fit

into our model of math education otherwise they would not be returning to

upgrade or redo their math. Brain research indicates that when the mind is

experiencing stress, parts of the brain not needed for survival shut down and

adrenaline is released into the brain to ensure survival and thus minimizing

learning. Brain research indicates that the brain is constantly capable of

learning. Within the brain, new dendrites grow every time learning takes place.

When learning takes place the axioms release endorphins and the body has a

feeling of pleasantness and euphoria. The brain craves positive stimulation. It

always craves new a challenge; not more dreary memorization.

The model that we use to teach math does not stimulate the brain if we get

students to memorize timetables, additions, and rules. Constant repetition of long

sums and divisions quietly lull the mind to sleep. Internal or external stress is put

on the students that dont fit into our educational model of memorization. If the

student looked for a new relationship each time there would be a positive

stimulation and enhance learning. The majority of students will never use math

again once they learn to add, subtract, multiply, divide, and do fractions. The

exceptions are those going on to the technologies and the sciences So the

question is why do we make students sit in class for twelve years learning

something that they will never use? The reason is because math trains people to

learn and to see the relationships between things, i.e. Problem solving. So why

do we get them to memorize every thing? If students cannot memorize rules they

become frustrated and if they do memorize the rules they forget them shortly

after the exam. So whats the point?

I dont want any student to memorize anything. I want them to learn how to be

creative.. To do that one must look for patterns and relationships. This forces the

mind to look at things differently and is rewarded when the endorphins are

released. Most students are told to work hard but when they do, they get tired

and then they make mistakes, then they get frustrated and make more mistakes

before they decide and prove to themselves that math is hard. The brain gets

stressed and releases adrenaline and treats math as a negative to be avoided.

We must look at teaching math from a different perspective.

What is meant by knowing how to count and by being lazy? If one wanted to

add two numbers, one could start counting from one number to the next. E.g. To

add 8+7, we can start counting at 8 until we count 7 more numbers and arrive at

15. But if we want to add 3,284,789 + 2,0325,498, we have to find a short cut or

a lazier way because it is going to take us too long to count that high and we

would probably make three or more mistakes. If we want to subtract 8-5, we

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could start at 8 and count backwards 5 places until we arrived at 3. But it would

be easier to ask what do we need to add to 5 to get 8. Either way the answer is

three. It is easier to count forward than backwards. To multiply 3 x 4, we could

rewrite it as 3+3+3+3=12 or 4+4+4 =12. So multiplication is just a series of

additions only it is easier to write 3 x 4 than 4+4+4=. But we need short cuts to

make it easier and quicker. Division is just a series of subtractions.

For example: if 4 grade one kids returned $13 worth of pop bottles, how would

they divide the money?

?

4 13

-4

9

-_4

5

-_4

1

1

2

3

3 +( 1 4 ) = 3

5 minus 4 leaves 1. So 4 can be subtracted from 13, 3 times. But what do we do

with the $1 left over. We can rewrite divide as . What does the top dot stand for

in the sign? What does the bottom dot stand for? The top dot represents the

numerator and the bottom dot represents the denominator. The bar represents

divide or a number split that many ways. A fraction is the top dot or numerator

divided by the bottom dot or denominator. 1 divided by 4. 1 is the numerator and

4 is the bottom dot or denominator 14=1/4 Or $1 is split 4 ways is a quarter.

We can now add, subtract, multiply, divide and do fractions just by knowing how

to count and be lazy. With the exception of geometry, what else is there to

know in math?

Knowing when to use a short cut or not comes with experience. It is also a

function of how much time is available. An analogy would be if a carpenter had

to cut a piece of wood 3 by 2 by with two holes. One is 5/8 and the

other . It takes five minutes to make one piece. But if he had to make 300

pieces it would take him 1500 minutes to make all of them. But if he spent 2

hours making a jig that would allow him to make the pieces in two minutes each,

he would save 1500 (600 + 120) = 880 minutes. Therefore it is worthwhile

spending time developing a jig. If he only had to make four pieces, it would not

be worth his while. Making jigs is similar to finding short cuts. Short cuts to

adding, subtracting, multiplying and dividing are worthwhile. It is important for the

students to find their own jigs or short cuts. If they create them for them selves

they can be easily recreated again if they are forgotten. Also creating new short

cuts trains the mind to look for new patterns.

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BREAKING PATTERNS

Patterns can be broken and encourage students to look for new patterns by a

simple exercise. First ask the students to make up a six digit number

234587,eg. Then ask for another six-digit number. 452635,eg. Then add another

six-digit number of our own, 765412,eg. Then ask the students for another six

digit, 852369,eg. Again follow this with one of our own, 147630,eg. Write them in

a column and ask them to quickly add the numbers.

234587

452635

765412

852369

147630

The answer is obviously 2452632. Why? What patterns were followed?

If one adds rows 1 and 3 the answer is 999999. If one adds rows 4 and 5, one

gets 999999 also. Adding these two answers our total is 1,999,998 or 2,000,000

minus 2. If we add that total to row number two (452,635) our answer is obviously

2,452,633. Instead of always adding the columns, lets look at alternatives.

If those numbers were too complex to start out with then lets look at a simpler set

of numbers.

09

18

27

36

45

54

63

72

81

90

What patterns are apparent here?

We can see that if we add 9 to each subsequent number, we get the next

number in the sequence. 18+ 9= 27, 27+9=36 etc. Or we could say that this is

the nine times tables. This can be used to learn or to remember or double check

our nine times tables.

We notice the sequence 1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9,0 going up the column and again down

the next column.

We notice that 09 written backwards is 90

We notice that 18 written backwards is 81

We notice that 27 written backwards is 72

We notice that 36 written backwards is 63

We notice that 45 written backwards is 54

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We also note that:: 18 =

27 =

36 =

45 =

54 =

63 =

72 =

81 =

1+8=9

2+7=9

3+6=9

4+5=9

5+4=9

6+3=9

7+2=9

8+1=9

Again we can use this information to check our nine times tables. The digits in

our answer must add to 9

We also note that we can add on the diagonal

1+9=10,

2+8=10

3+7=10

4+6=10

5+5=10

6+4=10 etc

Also

8+0=8

7+1=8

6+2=8

5+3=8

4+4=8

Etc

But this information is not really useful

0 x 9 +8 = 8

9 x 9 + 7 = 88

98 x 9 + 6 = 888

987 x 9 + 5 = 8888

9876 x 9 + 4 = 88888

98765 x 9 + 3 = 888888

987654 x 9 + 2 = 8888888

9876543 x 9 + 1 = 88888888

98765432 x 9 + 0 = 888888888

987654321 x 9 1 = 8888888888

9876543210 x 9 2 = 88888888888

What would the next numbers in the series be?

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Getting back to our 9 times tables;

09

18

27

36

45

54

63

72

81

90

Now quickly add up these numbers. The answer should quickly be seen as 495

why?

09

18

27

36

45

54

63

72

81

90

a

b

c

d

a

b

c

d

30

40

9+1=10

8+2=10

7+3=10

6+4=10

= 40

Plus 5 more = 45

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James Stevenson

A easier method is to:

09

18

27

36

45

54

63

72

81

90

45

45

495

5X9=45

A quicker method would be to notice that 5 is the middle number and we have 9

of them by looking at them from a different perspective.

09 = 5+4

18 = 5+3

27 = 5+2

36 = 5+1

45 = 5+0

54 = 5+4

63 = 5 -2

72 = 5 -3

81 = 5 -4

45=45+0

6=5 + 1

4=5 1

7=5 + 2

3=5 2

8=5 + 3

2=5 3

9=5 + 4

1=5 4

5=5 + 0

45 =45+0

9+8+7=3 x 8=24

3+4+5=3 x 4=12

1+2+3+4+5=5 x 3=15

An other method of adding this column quickly is to add the first row and the last

row to get

09 +90 =99

18 + 81=99

27 + 72=99

36 + 63=99

45 + 54=99

5 x 99 = 495

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09

18

27

36

45

54

63

72

81

90

495

LEARNING ADDIDTION

Adding can be simplified for some who do not want nor have the skills to

memorize their addition flash cards.

7+8 = 7+7=14+1=15

Or

7+8=8+8=16 1=15

This works for numbers that are close together. For some reason people

remember the sum of pairs.

Some prefer to break the numbers into functions or bases of 5s

7

+8

15

= 5+2

= 5 +3

=10+5=15

This is fairly cumbersome but necessary for some. Most can use a base of 10.

7

+8

15

7 + 3=10

8 3=5

15+0 = 15

So we must subtract 3 from 8 =5

--- 3

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Or

What must be added to 8 to complete the 10 ? ----= 2

So we must subtract 2 from the 7 = 5

7

+8

15

72 =5

8 + 2 =10

15 + 0= 15

8

+7

8 + 2 = 10

= 7

17 2 = 15

OR

We take the 8+ 2 more to make 10 plus the 7 = 17 minus the 2 that we added in

is equal to 15.

If one already knows their addition, these are cumbersome methods. However

by looking at these coping methods, one can identify patterns of coping to

transfer and to apply to more complex problems. We are learning transferable

coping skills for future use.

MULTIPLICATION

MULTIPLICATION TABLES SHOULD NOT BE MEMORIZED ; BUT SHOULD

BE SEEN IN RELATIONSHIP TO EACH OTHER. The students will eventually

learn or memorize the times tables because it is easier. However the times

tables should be memorized as a secondary method not as a primary method of

learning. They need a primary method that they can always revert back to if their

memory temporarily fails them. If a student does not know their times tables

down pat, I get them to fill out a blank times table form.

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1

2

3

4

5

6

7

8

9

10

11

12

13

14

15

10

15

20

20

30

40

5

10

15

20

25

30

35

40

45

50

55

60

65

70

75

10

11

12

13

14

15

20

30

40

30 35 40 45

50

55

60

65

70

75

60

70

80

90

60 70 80 90 100 110 120 130 140 150

110

120

130

140

150

The students are asked to fill in the blank spots. They are asked how they

completed the table. What relationships did they use and what relationships can

they find. Now they know that they can do the times tables on their own. Once

they have completed the table, and we know that they can figure them out on

their own, we take it and crumple the paper up and throw it away. This gives the

student the confidence that they can do times tables. We just have to find quicker

and easier methods of recalling the times tables.

The nine times tables create a lot of problems, yet they are one of the easiest.

Here are some different coping methods of approach:

1)

9 x 7 =?

We know

10 x 7= 70

10 groups of 7

so

9 groups of 7 would be

10 x 7 = 70 7 =63

one group of 7 less than 70 = 63

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James Stevenson

2)

ALTERNATIVE METHOD

9

x7

?

9

x7

We subtract 1 from 7 = 6 ?

9

X7

6?

We can now subtract the 6 from the 9 =3

The answer is

63

3)

A THIRD METHOD

The easiest method for most is the finger method. Start by placing our hands

face up and fingers out . Let the Os represent the open fingers and the Xs

represent the finger that is folded over.

1 x 9 is formed by folding the left thumb ( X ) in towards the palm. This leaves 9

fingers out. =9

1,2,3,4 5,6,7,8,9

XOOOO OOOOO = 9

1

2 x 9 is formed by folding the first finger in towards the palm This leaves the

1thumb up to the left of the first finger and 8 fingers to the right of the first finger.

1 + 1,2,3, 4,5,6,7,8

OXOOO OOOOO

=1 and 8 = 18

12

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3 x 9 is formed by folding in the middle finger. This leaves the thumb and first

finger or 2 digits to the left of the second finger and 7 fingers to the right of the

second finger.

1,2 +1,2, 3,4,5,6,7

OOXOO OOOOO = 2 and 7 = 27

123

4 x 9 is formed by folding in the ring finger. This leaves 3 fingers to the left of the

ring finger and 6 fingers to the left.

1,2,3 +1 2,3,4,5,6

OOOXO OOOOO = 3 and 6 = 36

1234

5 X 9 is formed by folding the baby finger down. This leaves 4 fingers to the left

and 5 to the right

1,2,3,4 + 1,2,3,4,5

OOOOX OOOOO = 4 and 5 = 45

6 x 9 is formed by folding in the left baby finger. This leaves 5 fingers on the left

hand and 4 on the right hand.

1,2,3,4,5 + 1,2,3,4

OOOOO XOOOO = 5 and 4 = 54

7 x 9 is formed by folding in the left ring finger. This leaves 6 on the left and 3

on the right of the right ring finger.

1,2,3,4,5,

OOOOO

6 +1,2,3

OXOOO

= 6 and 3 = 63

8 X 9 is formed by folding in the right middle finger. This leaves 7 fingers to the

left and 2 to the right of the right middle finger.

1,2,3,4,5, 6,7+ 1,2

OOOOO OOXOO = 7 and 2 = 72

9 X 9 is formed by folding in the right pointing finger. This leaves 8 fingers to the

left and 1 to the right of the right pointing finger.

1,2,3,4,5 6,78, +1

OOOOO OOOXO = 8 and 1 = 81

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7AND 8 TIMES TABLES GIVE THE MOST PROBLEMS TO THE MOST

PEOPLE

There are several methods that can be used. If we want to multiply.

7 X 8 =?

We know that 8 is = 4 X 2; so we can rewrite the equation as:

8 = (2 X 4) X 7 = ?

We know that :

4 X 7=28

Now we multiply :

2 X 28 = 56

OR

Another method is :

7X8=?

We know our 5 times tables by counting

5 x : 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11,12, 13, 14,15,16,17, 18

5,10,15,20,25,30,35,40,45, 50,55, 60, 65,70, 75, 80, 85, 90

7x8=?

We know

5 x 8 = 40

And we need 2 more groups of 8

2 x 8 = 16

Adding together, we get

40 + 16 = 56

So 7 groups of 8 =

7 x 8 = 56

OR

A more awkward but equally valid method to find 7 x 8 =? is similar to finding 9 x

7= 63 (We went 10 x 7 =70 minus 7 gave 63). Likewise 8 x7 = 9 x 7 = 63 minus

7 = 56

We can go from a known multiplication to an unknown multiplication by adding or

subtracting one group of the number being multiplied.

OR

The 6 Times tables can be based on the 5 times tables also.

6x7=?

5x:

5, 10,15,20,25,30,35,40,45,50, 55, 60, 65,

5 x 7 = 35

plus one more group of sevens

1x7= 7

6 x 7 = 35 +7 = 42

20 of 52

James Stevenson

OR

A method most people find useful once they get the hang of it, is to put both

hands face up with fingers pointing at each other. On both hands:

The thumbs represents 10

The pointer fingers represents 9

The middle fingers represents 8

The ring fingers represents 7

The baby fingers represents 6

Left Hand

Thumb

Right Hand

10

10 thumb

Pointer

Middle

Ring

Baby

9 Pointer

8

Middle Finger

7

Ring Finger

6

Baby Finger

To multiply 7 x 8, we touch together the 7 finger ( ring finger) on our left hand to

the 8 finger( middle ) on the right hand. This leaves 5 fingers below the 7 & 8

fingers. This gives us our 5 towards the answer. We have 3 fingers above the 7

finger on the left hand and we have 2 fingers above the 8 finger on the right

hand. We now multiply the

3 x 2 = 6. The 5 and the 6 are combine to yield the answer 56. The description

is harder than the answer.

1

2

3

Thumb

10

Pointer

Middle

Baby

=6

8

Ring

7

6

10

9

Middle

7

Ring

6

7 x 8 = 56

21 of 52

Baby

Thumb

Pointer

1

2

5 Fingers

Touching

James Stevenson

OR

8

x7

?

8 x7 can be rewritten with a 10 off to one side as:

10

8

X7

5

-2

-3

, 6

And by subtracting 7 from the 10 leaving 3

Now multiply the 2 X 3 gives us the 6

Next, we subtract the 3 from the 8 or we subtract 2 from the 7. Both will give us

the 5

The result is 56

This methods works for any number. However if we are using a two-digit

number, we use 100 instead of 10.

100

94

6

X97

3

91 + 18

First we subtract 94 from 100 giving us 6

Next we subtract 97 from 100 giving us 3

We multiply the results of our subtracting 6 x 3 = 18

Now we subtract the 3 from the diagonal number 94 3 = 91

Or we can subtract the 6 from the other diagonal 97 - 6 = 91

As we can see both subtractions on the diagonal will yield the same answer = 91

The final answer is 9,118

The question is why does it work every time? What limitations does it have ?

22 of 52

James Stevenson

If the numbers are larger than the base of 10 or 100 we add rather than subtract.

Ie.

12

+2

x 14 +4

16

8

12 is 2 more than 10

14 is 4 more than 10

We add 4 to the 12 OR add 2 to the 14 either will give 16

We now multiply the 2 x 4 to give us the 8

We combine the answers to give 168

If one number is above the base and the other is below, we add or subtract

To illustrate:

8 x14 = ?

8

x14

-2

+4

12

-8

120 -8 =112

8 is 2 less than 10

-2

14 is 4 more than 10

+4

We add -2 to 14 to give 12

Or we add +4 to 8 which also gives 12

We now multiply the (-2) x (+4) which yields -8

The 12 represents the number in the 10s column or 120

We now combine the 120 and (-8) = 120 8 = 112

So 8 x 14 = 112

96

108

104

-4

+8

-32

108 is 8 more than 100

We add on the diagonal 108 + (-4) =112

Similarly , we could add on the diagonal 96 + 8 =112

The 104 represents the 100s column or 10400

We now combine the 10400 and the (-32) to yield 10368

23 of 52

James Stevenson

The 11 times tables are very easy. Everybody can do 7 x 11 = 77 but if we ask:

27 x 11 = ?

Normally we write

27

x11

27

270

297

Here is where we deviate. If we add the first column as per normal and then

skip over to the third column we get

27

x11

27

270

2__7

This leaves us with a 2 and a ,7 the same number we started with 27. Next

we add the middle column which is a 2 and a 7, the same number we started

with 27. So why not just add the 2 to the 7 = 9 and stick it in the middle of

27

7 = 297

3+4=7

34

x11

374

However

67

x11

6137

67

x11

67

670

737

24 of 52

6+7=13

is not

James Stevenson

When the two digits add to 10 or more the tens digit carries over to the

hundreds column.

6+7=13

67

x11

737

Any number can be multiplied by eleven using this process.

26495

x11

2695

245

x11

2695

4+5 =9

2+4=6

4106

x11

506

Since 22 is 2 x 11, doubling the 23 gives us 46. And 46 x 11 = 506

23

X22

2 x 23 = 46

x11

6159

x11

759

By tripling the 11 we get 33 and by tripling the 23 we get 69. 69 x 11 = 759

23

x33

3 x 23 =69

x11

When we want to multiply by 25, we should look at what 25 represents rather

than taking 25 at face value. If we dont like the number s we have; change

them into one of equal value that are easier to work with. 25 has the same

value as 100 4 = 25 OR 25 100 = .25 = 1 / 4 x100

36

x25 = ( 100 4 )= 25

?

25 of 52

James Stevenson

OR

Another way of looking at the same question is:

36

x25

x( 25 100 ) = .25 =

x 36 = 9

9x100 =900

100 back in to give 900

If we want:

36

x26

?

36

x25

900

900 + 36 =936

SIMILARILY 24 times a number

36

x24

?

36

x25

900

900 + 36 =936

900 36 = 864

MULTIPLYING BY 75 OR 50

Multiplying by 50 or 75 is the same as multiplying by 25 only 2 or 3 time bigger.

36

x75

?

36

x25

900

x3

x3 = 2700

OR

36

x75

?

36 x = 27

26 of 52

x 100 = 2700

James Stevenson

MULTIPLING BY 5

5 can be rewritten with an equivalent value of 5 = 10 2

A large number can be simplified by multiplying by 10 and dividing by 2

46824

x 5

234120

x 10 = 468240

2

234120

Dividing by 5 is the same as multiplying by 1/5

So 1/5 = 2/10

234120 5 = ?

OR

123456 5 =

648

x125

?

If we divide the 125 by 1000 we get .125 which is =1/8

We multiply 648 x 1/8 =81 then x 1000 =81000

4512

x 125

9753

x125

27 of 52

James Stevenson

Similarly if we want to divide by 125 , we would multiply by 8 and divide by

1000

8/1000=125

125 234 =

234

= 1.872 OR 234 X 8 = 1872

125

Finding squares of numbers that are multiples of 10s is easy ; just square the

first number. For example 30 2 = (3 10) 2 = 3 2 10 2 = 9 100 = 900

To find the squares of 5, 15, 25, 35, 45, 55, ..95,105, 115. We take the

number preceding the 5 and multiply it by the next number on the number line

Eg. 35 2 = 3 x 4 + 25 = 12 + 25 = 1225 0r 3x4=12 plus 5 2 = 25 gives 1225

45 2 = 4 5 = 20 plus 5 2 = 25 = 2025

85 2 = 8 9 = 72 + 5 2 = 7225

115 2 = 11 12 = 132 + 5 2 = 13225

312 = 31X 31 = ?

To find the square of any two-digit number we remember :

(A +B)2 = (A + B)(A+B) = A2 + 2AB +B2

(31)(31) = (30 + 1)( 30 + 1) = 302 + 2(30)(1) +12 = 900 +60 +1 =961

66 = (65 + 1) = 65 + 2(65)(1) + 12 = 4225 + 130 + 1 = 4356

With practice these can be done in ones head.

2

To keep the numbers simpler, it may be easier to subtract rather than add.

28 of 52

James Stevenson

MULTIPLYING DOUBLE DIGIT NUMBERS THAT ARE CLOSE TO EACH

OTHER:

To multiply two numbers that are close to each other and have a difference

between each other that is equal, we use the difference of squares formula.

(A + B)(A B) = A2 B2

43

x37

40 + 3

40 3

A=40

37= 40 3

B=3

43=A+B

A-B

(A B)(A + B)

( 40 3 )( 40 + 3) = 402 32 = 1600 9 = 1591

69

x 71

70 1

70 + 1

DIVISION

Division is the number of times that the divisor can be subtracted from the

dividend 13 4 = ?

This can be written as:

?

4 13

-4 1 once

9

2 times

-4

5

3 times

-4

1

The 1 still has to be divided; so we rewrite it as 1 4 =

In the what does the top dot represent? It is for the numerator or the

1 goes on top

What does the bar represent? It means divide or split

What does the bottom dot represent? It represents the denominator or the

4

1

1 4 can be rewritten as

, which we call one quarter.

4

This requires too much work but it is possible for anyone to do.

29 of 52

James Stevenson

An easier method must be found. We know that we can write division three

different ways.

1

14= 4 1 =

4

We know that if we have six bottles of beer out of a dozen, we can write it as:

6

1

12

2

We have all had enough beer to know that this is the correct answer

OR we reduced the first fraction 6/12 to a lower or simpler fraction of by

dividing the numerator and divisor each by 6 . Similarly we can rewrite

3

75

3

4

75

4848

1212

303

64 4848

4 = 64 4848

64

16

4

1

4848

64

1212

16

Instead of dividing by a large number we can gradually reduce the divisor and the

dividend by equal increments

This is only possible if the divisor and the dividend are reducible by the same

factors. We may only be able to reduce the divisor by one or two steps, but even

that makes for an easier division. If the divisor is a prime number then we need

another method.

30 of 52

James Stevenson

TO DIVIDE BY A PRIME NUMBER :

To divide a number like:

19 875735 There is no obvious easy method to do this because 19 is a prime

number and cannot be factored by definition.

Therefore we can draw a line like a ruler and mark both ends with 0 to19 on the

bottom and 0 to 10 on the top

0________________5________________10

0

9.5

19

We look at the first number in our dividend and we see that it is an 8. We

determine where the 8 would fit on the bottom scale and that would correspond

to a 4 on the top scale.

0____________4____5________________10

0

8

9.5

19

4

19 875735

76

11

Next we position the 11 on the bottom scale and find the it corresponds to a 6 on

the top scale

0____________

0

5____6___________10

9.5 11

19

46

19 875735

76

115

114

1

0___1_________

5_______________10

0 1

9.5

19

31 of 52

James Stevenson

Since the 1on the bottom is less than the 1 on the top scale, we choose the 0

460

19 875735

76xxx

115

114

173

This leaves us with a 17 to put on the bottom scale and we find that corresponds

with a 9 on the top scale

0____________

0

5___________

9___10

9.5

17

19

4609

19 875735

76xxx

115

114

173

171

2

5___________

0__1__________

0

2

9.5

46091. 6/19

19 875735

76xxxx

115

114

173

171

25

19

6

32 of 52

___10

19

James Stevenson

This method is not any different from the regular long division except that we now

have a method guesstimating which numbers to use. How and why does it

work?

WHAT IS A FRACTION?

What does say?

says:

1. 1 2 =1/2

1/ 2

2. 2 1

3. 0.5 =1/2

4. 50% =1/2

5. 1:2 ratio

6. 1 part out of 2

7. 1 over 2

says all seven of these things and we want to be able to use any of the

seven different transformations to make it easier. E.g.

10 x = 10 x (1 2) =10 x 1 = 10 2 = 5

By translating math into English, this says 10 times 1 ( numerator) divided

by 2 (denominator)

When we multiply two whole numbers together we get a bigger

number.

When we multiply a number by a fraction we get a smaller number.

Why?

x = 1 4 = x 1 =1/4 2= 1/8

In English this says 1 divided by 4 equals multiplied by 1 (numerator)

and divided by 4 (denominator) However this is clumsy so lets try an

easier method. We get the same results if we multiple numerator times

numerator and divide by the product of denominator times denominator.

x=

1 x 1 =1

( 4 x 2) = 8 = 1/8

Visually, if we have 1 unit and divide it into 4 we get;

1

2

3

4

0

0

2/4

33 of 52

4/4

1

James Stevenson

If we divide the s in half we get

0

1/8

3/8

5/8

7/8

8/8

10 x 25 = 10 x ( 20 + 5 ) = (10 x 5) + (10 x 20) = (50) + ( 200) = 250

10 x 2 = 10 x (2 + ) = (10 x 2 ) + (10 x ) = (20) + ( 5) = 25

OR

We can change the fraction into a decimal and multiply by the number.

can be rewritten as decimal 5 or .5 . So

10 x 2.5 = 25 Same thing only different.

However it is often easier to change the mixed numbers to improper numbers.

E.g.

5 x 7 = (5 x 4 =20 +1 = 21/4s ) x (7 x 2 = 14 +1 = 15/2s)

21 15

315

=

= 39 3/8

=

4 2

8

OR

1 3

16 15

=

5 3 =

3 4

3 4

since 3 x 4 = 4 x 3

we can rewrite

16

15

4...... ....... 3

4

3

16 15

16 15

as

3 4

4 3

= 4 x 3 = 12

If the numbers are convenient, here is an alternate method.

1 1

1

3 x8 = 27

4 3

12

(A+b)(C+d)=

OR

where A=3, b=1/4. C=8, and d=1/3

1

1

1

1

1

1

1

(3 + )(8 + ) = (3)(8) + (3)( ) + (8)( ) + ( )( ) = 24 + 2 + 1 +

= 27

4

3 4

12

12

4

3

3

34 of 52

James Stevenson

DIVIDING FRACTIONS

If we divide two numbers into each other the result is a smaller number.

However if we divide a number by a fraction the result is a larger number. Why?

10 = 40

10 2.5

What this says is that if we have a 10-dollar bill and ask to have it changed or

divide it into s we should get 40 quarters back. Since there are 4 quarters in 1

loonie and there are 10 loonies in a ten dollar bill there must be (10 x 4 ) = 40

quarters in a 10 dollar bill.

Larger

smaller

Divisor

answer

10 5

=2

10 4

=2.5

= 3 1/3

10 3

10 2

=5

10 1

= 10

10

= 20

10 1/4

= 40

10 1/8

= 80

smaller

larger

divisor

answer

Rather than teaching the addition of fractions as something new, lets see what

we already know. How much money do you have if you have:

1 quarter

3dimes

3nickles

7 cents

77 cents

.25

.30

.15

.07

.77

3/10

3/20

7/100

25/100

30/100

15/100

7/100

77/100

or hundredths, we can add them. If we see them as separate fractions, we must

convert them to a common denominator., which is what we do when we convert

to decimals. And add the numerators. Same thing only different.

When we subtract fractions the same rules apply as adding.

5 = 5 2/4

-3 = -3

2

35 of 52

James Stevenson

Only sometimes the numerator of the minuend may be smaller than the

numerator of the number to be subtracted. In this case we just borrow from the

whole number as we do in regular subtraction. E.g.

5 = 5 = 4 +(4/4) + = 4 5/4

-3

-3 = -3 2/4 =

1

The easiest method is to add the common denominator to the numerator of the

minuend and subtract 1 from the whole number of the minuend. This results in

the numerator being large enough to subtract without being negative. This is the

same as getting change back from $5.25 when we spend $3.50. We change the

$5.00 bill to 4 loonies and 4 quarters plus the other $0.25 giving us 4 loonies and

5 quarters.

Some may find an alternate method easier but many dont. It requires the use of

negatives

5 = 5

-3 = -3 2/4

2 =1

5 minus 3 = 2 and minus or 2/4s = negative . The result is 2 minus

=1

DECIMALS

If we divide 13.00 4 = 3.25 OR

13 4 = 3 What is the difference?

Which is worth more? Why do we write it one-way one time and different the next

time? What are the advantages and disadvantages of either?

25

5

1

3 3 =3

100

20

4

A decimal is a fraction with a denominator of 10, 100, 1000, 1,000, 10,000,

100,000, . Etc EXEPT for rule #2 : we are too LAZY to write in the

denominator. It becomes redundant when we know the denominator will be a

factor of 10. I call them metric fractions. Even though there is no such

designation.

Our monetary system is based on decimals, which are factors of tens.

$3.25 tells us that we have three dollars and 2 dimes or 2/10 of a dollar plus 5

cents or 5/100s of a dollar. The 2 represents the 1/10 dollar place the 5

represent the 1/100s of a dollar place etc..

36 of 52

James Stevenson

An easy method of reading decimals is to put your pencil on the decimal point

and draw two lines ; one vertical below the decimal point and one horizontal to

the right of the decimal point and add the same number of zeros as we have

numbers to the right of the decimal point

3.25

===

3 25

3 25

00

00

and is read three and twenty five hundredths

25

100

To multiply decimals, we multiply the decimal by a factor of10 and divide the

answer by the same factor of 10.

8

8

8

x(0.5 x 10)= 5

x5

x0.5

40 10 = 4.0

To divide by a decimal, we multiply BOTH the divisor and dividend by the same

factor of 10.

?

2.5 1.25

?

0.5

x

x

2.5

10

1.25

10

25

12.5

(

)

?

?

?

10.2

0.45 4.590 ( 0.45 x100 ) ( 4.590 x100 ) 45 459.0 45 459.0

EQUIVILANTS

A fraction, a decimal, and a percent are all equivalent representations of the

same value.

= 0.25 = 25% are all equal or equivalents

Each has its own advantages and disadvantages. We must be able to convert

back and forth easily.

0.25

1 = 0.25 =25%

= 1 4 =4

0.25 =

25

1

=

100

4

25%=

25

1

=

100

4

=25%

= 0.25

37 of 52

James Stevenson

Fractions can be converted to decimals by dividing the numerator by the

denominator (which is the definition of a fraction)

Decimals can be converted to fractions by an easy method. That is to put your

pencil on the decimal point and draw two lines ; one vertical below the decimal

point and one horizontal to the right of the decimal point and add the same

number of zeros as we have numbers to the right of the decimal point. The

numbers to the right of the decimal form the numerator and the horizontal line is

the divide by . The denominator is formed by the vertical line which represents

the 1and the zeros that are added on to form 10s, 100s, 1000s, etc..

A percentage can be converted to a fraction by changing the% sign to 1/100s

and then we have a fraction. Eg 25% is equivalent to 25/100 1 / 4 . The

percentage can be converted directly into a decimal by removing the % sign

and dividing by 100 or by moving the decimal two places to the left.

25

1

25% 25 100

100

4

FRACTIONS TO DECIMAL EQUIVILENTS

There are some common and very useful fraction to decimal equivalents that are

well worth knowing. But it is important to see the pattern rather than memorize

the list.

0.5

We start with = 1 2 = 2 1 =0.5000

A half of is = x =

A half of is = x =1/8

A half of 1/8 is = 1/8 x =1/16

and a half of 0.2500 = 0.250 x = 0.125

and a half of 0.125 = 0.125 x = 0.0625

3/8 is found by 1/8 + = 3/8

and 0.125 + 0. 250 = 0.375

is found by + =

7/8 is found by + 1/8 = 7/8

and 0.250 + 0.500 = 0.750

and 0.750 + 0.125 = 0.875

38 of 52

OR

James Stevenson

0.33333

The next group starts with 1/3 = 1 3 = 3 1.0000 = 0.33333333333 repeating

2 x 1/3 = 2/3

1/6 is found by halving 1/3

x 1/3 = 1/6

1/12 is found by halving 1/6

1/6 x = 1/12

1/9 is found by finding a third of 1/3

1/3 x1/3 =1/9

2/9 is found by doubling 1/9

1/9 x 2 = 2/9

49 = 4 x 1/9

0.0909090909

11

1.0000000000

1/11 is found by

and halving 0.33333

0.333333 x = 0.166666

and halving 0.166666

0.166666 x = 0.0833333

and a third of 0.3333

0.333333 x 1/3 =0.111111

and doubling 0.111111

2 x 0.111111 = 0.22222

4 x 0.111111 = 0.444444 etc

0.09090909 repeating

2 x 1/11 = 2/11

3 x 1/11 = 3 11

4 x 1/11 = 4/11

2 x 0.090909 =0.18181818

3 x 0.090909 =0. 27272727

4 x 0.090909 = 0.36363636

etc.

and 1/11 = 0.090909

= 0.09,09,09 factors of nine

IN ORDER

1/32

1/16

1/8

3/8

5/8

7/8

0.03125

0.0625

0.125

0.250

0.375

0.500

0.625

0.750

0.875

1/12

1/11

1/9

1/6

2/11

2/9

1/3

2/3

5/6

0.08333

0.0909090

0.111111

0.166666

0.18181818

0.222222

0.33333

0.66666

0.833333

We also notice that 1/12 = 0.083333 which is the same as 0.83333 = 5/6 only ten

times larger.

10 5

If we multiply 1/12 x 10 =

=

1/12 = 0.08333 x 10 =0.83333

12 6

39 of 52

James Stevenson

We can now do all the fractions or divisions of:

, 1/3s,1/4s, 1/5s, 1/6s, 1/7s,(to follow) 1/8s, 1/9s, 1/10s, 1/11s, 1/12s,

1/6s, and 1/32s.

1/7s are unique and fascinating: First we take the 7 and double it.

1/7 =0.14

we double the 14 = 1/7 =0.1428

We now double the 28 and add the1 from the numerator, which gives us

56 + 1 = 57

1/7 = 0.142857 and this number repeats itself forever.

1/7 = 0.142857142857142857.etc

2/7 can be found by doubling 1/7. 2 x .142857142857 2/7 =0.2857142857.

3/7 can be found by tripling 1/7 or adding 1/7 + 2/7= 3/7 = 0.42857142857etc

4/7 , 5/7 and 6/7s can be found by adding the multiples of 1/7s. however if we

look at the pattern we find a easier method is:

1/7

=

0.1428571428

2/7

=

0.2857142857

3/7

=

0.42857142857

4/7

=

0.5714285714

5/7

=

0.71428571428

6/7

=

0.85714285714

The same sequence repeats itself over and over again. The only difference is

that we start the sequence at the first smallest number 1 and 2/7 with the second

smallest number in the sequence at 2 and 3/7 with the third smallest number in

the sequence 4 And the 4/7 at the fourth smallest number in the sequence at 5

and so on and so .

We can quickly convert other fractions to decimals by combining

?

0.3125

5 1 1

16 5 =

= + = 0.250 + 0.0625 = 0.3125 16

5

16 4 16

PERCENT

The etymology of percent is :

PER means divide or each e.g. miles per hour; dollars per hour; etc

CENT means one hundred 100

So per cent means divide by 100. or for each 100

43

? Rule number #2. People just

So why do we write 43 percent as 43% not

100

got lazier and lazier.

40 of 52

James Stevenson

43

100

43

100

43

100

43

100

43

100

43

100

43 100

43 100

43

0 0 = 43%

43% =

43

100

Initially there are only three types of questions that we can ask in percentages.

What is 75 percent of 12

9 is what % of 12 and

9 is 75% of what number?

41 of 52

James Stevenson

To do this we use ratios to make one fraction the same as another fraction.

9

75

=

We also put the fractions in a box.

12 100

is

12

75

of

100

The box always contains the inserts: is, of, %, and 100 in the same order. By

reading the questions and noticing where the words of, is, % fall in the question.

We insert the numbers appropriately. The 100 always goes in the lower right box.

There should always be two other numbers in the question to appropriately fill in

boxes and we can calculate the third number. Now we just make the two

fractions equal by finding a common denominator. Or by cross multiplying the

two numbers on the diagonal and by dividing by the third number present.

E.g.

What (x) is 75% of 36? The x or unknown goes in the is box and the 75 goes

into the% box. The 36 is next to the of box and goes there.

X

is

36

75

of

100

The 36 is multiplied by the 75 (the two numbers on the diagonal). And divide by

the third number ( 100) 36 x 75 = 900 100 = 9 9 is 75% of 36

OR

What (X) percent is 9 of 36?

9

36

is

X

of

100

9 x 100 = 900 36 = 75 %

42 of 52

James Stevenson

OR

We can reduce the fraction:

9 1

?

1x 25 = 25

= =

=

= 25%

36 4 100 4 x 25 = 100

and fin out how many s in 100

WORD PROBLEMS

Most people have problems with word problems because there are too many

variables to memorize. So we need a easy method of handling word problems.

There are seven steps that can be used too solve almost all word problems.

1 RTFQ

2 What is given?

3 What are we looking for?

4 Draw a diagram.

5 Change the numbers

6 Write and equation and solve

7 Revert back to the original numbers and solve

#1 RTFQ means Read The F ing Question. F stands for Following or Full.

The student has their choice as to what F stands for.

#5 means choosing numbers that are easy to work with and are easy to

visualize.

EG.

If a tank contained 285 liters when it was 5/8s full. How much would it contain if

it were full?

1 RTFQ

2 How much would it contain if it were full?

3 We have 285 liters and 5/8 full

4

5/8 =285

600

=300

43 of 52

James Stevenson

5 If we change the numbers from 285 to 300 and 5/8 to we can see in the

changed numbers would give us. If the tank had 300 when it was half full it

must have 600 when it is full. The answer must be 300 ? =600

Now we have to determine what procedure to use that will give us our

answer. We only have four choices: add, subtract, multiply or divide.

subtraction wont give us the correct answer

300 600

300 + 600

addition wont give us the correct answer

300 x 600

multiplication wont give us the correct answer

300 = 600

we can see that the correct procedure would be to divide

6 285 5/8 = 285 x 8/5 = 456

METRIC

Metric has been used in Canadas monitory system for over a century now. Our

monitory system uses groups of tens. There are 100 cents in a dollar and 10

cents in a dime and 10 dimes in a dollar. The metric system for all forms of

measurement was adopted in Canada in the mid seventies. The French

originally created the metric system about 300 years ago to simplify

measurements in science and trade. A meter was originally defined as one, ten

millionth the distance from the North Pole to the equator. A more precise and

consistent method of measuring this distance is to measure the time that light

travels over the one meter. This time is

1

s of a second. Or, the speed of light is measured at 299,792,458

299, 792, 458

meters per second.

The prefixes kilo, hecta, deca, deci centi, and milli are used for all three base

units. The base units are the meter, liter and gram. Each is broken into factors or

multiples of tens. The different denominations of dollars all have different slang

equivalent terms.

1000

100

10

1

1/10

1/100

1/1000

Grand

c-note

sawbuck

$

dime

cent

mil

Kilo

Hecta

Deca

Meter

Liter

Gram

44 of 52

Deci

cent

milli

James Stevenson

A kilometer is 1,000 meters

A meter is 1,000 millimeters or 100 centimeters

or 10 decimeters

A kiloliter is 1,000 liters. A liter is 1,000 milliliters.

A kilogram is 1,000 grams A gram is 1,000 milligrams

A milliliter is also equal to 1 cubic centimeter (1cm3) by definition.

A gram is the mass or weight equal to one milliliter of water at Standard

Temperature and Pressure

There is a direct relationship between linear measurement, volume and mass

(weight). If we know one measurement, we can calculate the other two

measurements, unlike the Imperial system. How many cubic inches in a peck?

To convert metric units of measurement, all we have to do is move the decimal

point the appropriate number of places. To convert 234 centimeters (cm) to

kilometers, we look at the scale and determine that kms are five positions to the

left of cms. So we move the decimal place five places to the left.

234 cm

234. cm =

0.00234 km

5

5

5

Kilo

4

Hecta

0

3

Decca

1

2

Meter

2

1

Deci

3

0

cent

4

milli

To convert 23.12 hectometers, we move the decimal place four places to the

right (in the direction from hectometers to centimeters four units)

23.12 hm

= 23.1200.

4

231,200 cm

.

.

4

Similarly, liters and grams are converted by moving the decimal place left or right

depending on the relative direction the prefix is to be converted.

BASIC GEOMETRY

Rather than memorizing all sorts of formulas, lets look at the similarities among

the different geometric shapes. We need to calculate perimeter, circumference,

area, and volume.

Perimeter is the distance around an object, regardless of how many sides or

shape that the object has. Circumference is the perimeter of a circle or the

distance around a circle. If we wrapped a string all the way around the geometric

figure from start to finish and stretched the string out, that would be the total

measured distance around the figure. The distance between the two points on

the string (from start to finish) would be a one-dimensional measurement. E.g.

45 of 52

James Stevenson

feet , centimeters, meters, inches, etc Perimeters are found by adding the total

of all sides together.

The area of an object would be the number of square units that would fit into

each geometric figure. Area is found by multiplying the number of units in one

direction by the number of units in a perpendicular direction. Since we are

measuring in two directions, we will have two-dimensional measurements. The

exponents on the units will always be a 2. E.g. cm x cm = cm 2, feet x feet =

two-dimensional

feet 2, M x M = M2

Volume is the number of cubes that can b put into a three dimensional geometric

figure. Volume is measured by multiplying the number of measuring units in

three different perpendicular directions. E.g. cm x cm x cm = cm3 ,

three dimensional

ft x ft x ft = ft3 , M x M x M = M 3

PERIMETER

One-dimensional

AREA

two-dimensional

VOLUME

three dimensional

S5

S1 + S2 + S3 + S4 =P

S1 X S2 = A

A x S5 = V

S1 x S2 x H = V

S1 X S2 = A

AXH=V

(S1 x S2 ) x H = V

S3

S1

S4

S2

CUBE

H

S1

S3

S4

S2

RECTANGLE

PERIMETER

AREA

S1 + S2 + S3 = P

S3

S1

TRIANGLE

S2

A xH = V

S1 x S2 = A

= a rectangle

46 of 52

VOLUME

James Stevenson

D1

Diameter

D2

D4

D3

The perimeter of the box with dimensions

equal to the Diameter of the circle is 4D. But

we dont want the full perimeter of the box

because we dont go all the ways to the

corners. We follow the curve from D1, to D2, to

D3, to D4, and back to D1. So instead of 4D

we use 3.14 D = D = circumference

And if we add the area of the other

four small boxes we would have an

area of 4 R2 But we dont want the

shaded areas of the boxes . So

instead of 4R2 we

use 3.14R2 OR R2

47 of 52

James Stevenson

ALGEBRA

Algebra is just somebody too lazy to write out all the words that they want to use

is solving a problem. E.g.

Q: Johnny went to the store and bought four apples. The four apples cost one

dollar. How much did each apple cost?

A:

Four apples cost one dollar

One apple cost one quarter.

OR

4 apples = $1

1 apples = 1 4 =

OR easier still

4 Apples = $1

1 Apple =

4A=1

A=

We went from 69 letters in the first solution to 7 symbols in the last or algebraic

solution. That is all that algebra is; just somebody too lazy to write out all the

extra words. Algebra is like a foreign language that has to be translated back

into English. When that is done; it is easy. X usually represents some unknown

number. So every time we see X , we can translate it to read some unknown

number.

Algebraic equations are balanced similar to a teeter-totter. If the weight or value

on one side is equal to the opposite side, then the teeter-totter stays balanced

otherwise one side goes up and the other side goes down. We want to keep

algebraic equations balanced.

E.g. 5X + 7 = 23. Translated into English the equation says, 5 times some

unknown number plus 7 more is equal to 22. What is the unknown number?

To solve this, we want to know what some unknown number X represents.

We want to put the variable or X on one side of the teeter-totter and every thing

else on the other side. If we take 7 off one side of the teeter-totter then one side

will go up and the other side down. So we have to subtract 7 from both sides.

But another method of seeing the same thing is to ask What is attached to the

X and how? We see that the 7 is attached by a + and if we want the 7 on the

opposite side we use the opposite sign of + which is negative a -.on the

opposite side of the equation.

48 of 52

James Stevenson

We want the 7 to change sides ; so we change signs

5X = 22 7 = 15 5X = 15

5X + 7 = 22

side . So the opposite of multiplication is division. So we divide the opposite side

by 5

X = 15 5 = 3

5X = 15

5(3) + 7 = 22

X=3

The X is isolated on the one side of the teeter totter and the equivalent is on

the other side of the teeter-totter.

( X + 2 )(X +3) =X2 + 5X + 6 Translated into English, this says some number X

plus two more multiplied by the same number plus three more. This is no

different than 22 x 23 = (20 + 2) x (20 + 3) = 400 + 40 +60 + 6 = 506 written

horizontally rather than vertically.

22

x23

66

440

506

20 + 2

x 20 + 3

60 + 6

400 +40

400 + 100 + 6 = 506

INTEGERS

Integers are positive and negative numbers. One must learn to be able to

interchange the plus sign + and the positive sign. The rules for multiplication

and division of positive and negative integers are the same. Translating math into

English, we have:

+x+=+

-x +=+x-=-x-=+

I have some = +

have is + and some is +

I dont have some = dont is - and some is +

I have none = have is + and none is -

I dont have none = +

dont is - and none is -

if you dont have none , you must have some

49 of 52

James Stevenson

To add or subtract two or more numbers with the same sign, we just add or

subtract as per normal and maintain the same sign.

+ 22

+ + 33

+ 55

- 22

+ - 33

- 55

+ 33

- + 22

+ 11

- 33

- -22

- 11

How ever to add two numbers of opposite signs, we change the sign of the

smaller number and subtract the smaller number from the larger and keep the

sign of the larger number.. Eg.

+ 33

+ - 22

+ 33

- + 22

- 33

+ + 22

- 33

- - 22

+ 11

- 11

This procedure makes the signs the same and we add or subtract as per normal.

And inversely to subtract two numbers of opposite signs; we change the sign of

the number to be subtracted and add the two numbers together.

+ 33

- - 22

+ 33

+ + 22

+ 55

- 33

- + 22

- 33

+ -22

- 55

integers is to combine the two signs into and do as required.eg.

+ 33

- - 22 - x - = +

+ 33

- 33

- 33

+ 22

- + 22 - x+= -22

+ 55

- 55

A negative times a negative is a positive and a negative times a positive is a

negative.

50 of 52

James Stevenson

CONCLUSION

Math is a process and there is more than one approach or process that will

achieve the correct answer. There are no right or wrong methods of doing math;

only easier and harder methods. Not all brains operate in the same manner as

others or the same manner each time. This booklet was designed to break

people out of a model that did not work well or at all for them. Hopefully it is

designed to stimulate others into finding newer approaches and a better

understanding of math.

The methods described in this booklet are mostly from students and have been

modified and rewritten to show a consistent pattern. If one can recognize the

oneness or the similarity of addition, subtraction, multiplication, division and

fractions; then one can see the oneness or simplicity of all aspects of math.

If you have additions, modifications, or improvements please email me at

jstevenson@camosun.bc.ca

COPYRIGHT

This material is copyrighted but may be used or copied by anyone with the

exception of the material being sold for profit. In which case permission may be

requested by contacting jstevenson@camosun.bc.ca.

51 of 52

James Stevenson

52 of 52

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