{ "media_type": "text", "post_content": "I teach 4th grade. My students are having difficulty with regrouping in subtraction. We use the Bridges in Mathematics program. The strategies confuse the students and each year, their basic skills get weaker. Anybody else using this program see the same problem?", "post_id": "609341e7cdfe8f0029ace69a", "reply_count": 5, "vote_count": 1, "bowl_id": "5c9f9c402f4dd9001faca19f", "bowl_name": "Math Educators" }

I teach 4th grade. My students are having difficulty with regrouping in subtraction. We use the Bridges in Mathematics program. The strategies confuse the students and each year, their basic skills get weaker. Anybody else using this program see the same problem?

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Yes, we use Bridges. I personally love it if it's used the right way. I'm an elementary math specialist, recently out of a 4th grade classroom position. I see what you're saying about being confusing, but it should be stressed that you choose the right strategy for the situation AND whatever they are efficient at. I told my students they could count on their fingers for all I care as long as it's an efficient method for tackling a problem. Standard algorithm is great.... For some students and situations. Number line model and associated strategies are great..... For some students and situations. Etc...

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As a high school teacher unfortunately I don’t have much knowledge but check out Cathy Fosnot and Jo Boaler, they are phenomenal with math Ed in elementary.

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Can you stray away from the program?

I use bridges in 5th grade, and I also see a weakness in our base skills. In my opinion abstract reasoning is being pushed too early with this program and these core skills are being less of a point.

Have you considered using money as an example? One dollar is equal to 4 quarters, or ten dimes, etc. Equivalent amounts, but different way to group.

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