Scene 4

Joe continued, "Now that we know a little about long division and story problems, I'd like us to think of a way to describe long division. We have learned a lot about multiplication, right? For example, what's 5 times 6?"

A chorus of the answer "30" was heard from all corners of the room. Even DeAnna seemed interested in trying to chime in with her answer.

"Great! Now, what is 30 divided by 5?"

The students thought. Some wrote on pieces of scratch paper. C.J. answered first. "It's 6!"

As Mr. Miller wrote this on the overhead, DeAnna spoke up. "It's kinda like the other problem."

"You're right-it is. Division is the inverse of multiplication," Joe said. He then went on to further explain the relationship between multiplication and division. This elaboration strategy seemed to work for many of the students, but Joe was not so sure about DeAnna.

Click here to view the Elaboration Strategies Tool in the Cognitive Strategies section.


  1. Many math series emphasize discovery learning and communication over memorization and practice. Evaluate this shift in mathematical education and its affect on students' mathematical abilities.
  2. How will the extra work Joe is putting into introducing division in a way that is understandable to students pay off for his students when they begin to work on more difficult division problems?



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