Using Shortcuts

Teaching children to use shortcuts to solve word problems is entirely different from teaching them to make models. On the previous tab I encouraged you to explicitly teach your children how to model the various types of word problems. But shortcuts are something that they should figure out on their own.

Why Should I Let My Children Figure Out Shortcuts On Their Own?

If you want your children to be good problem solvers, across all disciplines, in novel situations, you must give them opportunities to figure things out on their own. To the extent that you show children shortcuts you are depriving them of the opportunity to practice problem solving.

How Can I Get My Children To Figure Out Shortcuts On Their Own?

Here are some videos that illustrate the teaching of (simple) shortcuts.

The following is very general advice. I think that the best way for you to understand

is to view the videos.