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Australian Primary Mathematics Classroom, v16 n2 p8-13 2011

Much has been written about the value of concrete manipulatives for supporting students' mathematics learning. This is particularly true for the domain of fractions and decimals. Understanding of decimal place-value is seen as critical for students' mathematics learning. To understand decimals, students need first to have a solid understanding of fractions as parts of a whole. Teaching about fractions is likely to begin with familiar fractions such as one-half, one-quarter, one-third, etc. In preparation for understanding decimals, students need to understand the idea that one-tenth is one piece of a whole that has been divided into 10 equal pieces. In this article, the authors describe how a simple teaching aid called a Deciwire may be used to help children understand decimals. (Contains 6 figures.)

Descriptors: Mathematics Education, Mathematics Instruction, Arithmetic, Mathematics, Teaching Methods, Foreign Countries, Manipulative Materials, Models, Primary Education

Australian Association of Mathematics Teachers (AAMT). GPO Box 1729, Adelaide 5001, South Australia. Tel: +61-8-8363-0288; Fax: +61-8-8362-9288; e-mail: office[at]; Web site:

Autor: Young-Loveridge, Jenny; Mills, Judith


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