Teacher guide Improving mental computation skills in middle years students

TLF ID S7053

This teacher resource describes a strategy to build the pedagogy of teachers to support the numeracy skills of students in years 3-8 in selected schools in the ACT. The resource describes the Middle Years Mental Computation (MYMC) strategy, including the MYMC assessment tool and professional learning modules. It explains that the strategy is based on a development cycle for each concept, starting with manipulatives, then spending time working with mental images and their manipulation before moving on to written methods. Outcomes included improved numeracy results. The resource discusses the lessons learned, outlines the research base and provides relevant references.

Educational details

Educational value
  • This resource may be useful in supporting the mathematics learning area. It describes the MYMC strategy, which was found to improve teacher pedagogical content knowledge and student numeracy outcomes. The strategy encourages students to manipulate mental images before using written methods when learning new number concepts. The strategy has several useful components including professional learning modules and resources, and a diagnostic tool.
  • This resource might assist teachers in addressing the aspects of the Numeracy general capability relating to number, particularly the ability to use efficient mental strategies to solve problems involving fractions and decimals. It is useful in describing a mental computation development cycle using the MYMC strategy and discussing the research base informing the initiative. It also provides references to readings relevant to development of skills in mental computation.
Year level

3; 4; 5; 6; 7; 8

Learning area
  • Mathematics
  • Mathematics/Measurement and geometry
  • Mathematics/Number and algebra
  • Mathematics/Statistics and probability

    Other details

    • Publisher
    • Date of contribution: 2014-04-04
    • Name: Education Services Australia
    • Organisation: Education Services Australia
    • Address: AUSTRALIA
    • URL: http://www.esa.edu.au
    • Copyright holder
    • Date of contribution: 2014-04-04
    • Name: Commonwealth of Australia
    • Organisation: Commonwealth of Australia
    • Address: AUSTRALIA
    • URL: http://www.australia.gov.au
    Metadata contributors
    • Resource metadata contributed by
    • Name: Education Services Australia
    • Organisation: Education Services Australia
    • Address: AUSTRALIA
    • URL: http://www.esa.edu.au
    Access profile
    • Generic
    Learning resource type
    • Teacher guide
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    • © 2014 Commonwealth of Australia, unless otherwise indicated. This material is provided under a Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike licence (CC BY-SA 3.0 AU) unless otherwise indicated. You may distribute, remix and build upon this material, provided that you include the acknowledgement '© Commonwealth of Australia 2014' and license under the same terms any new creations you have based on the material.