Texas Mathematics Teacher Spring/Summer 2018 - 19

What Can Elementary Teachers Do with Technology? There's an App for That

Secondly, imagine a third or fourth grade teacher
exploring the sum of 2,164 and 3,799. Students are required
to compose numbers in concrete ways that connect to the
abstract vertical algorithm in these grade levels.
Third grade teachers can extend TEKS 4(A): solve with
fluency one-step and two-step problems involving
addition and subtraction within 1,000 using strategies
based on place value, properties of operations, and the
relationship between addition and subtraction; and fourth
grade teachers can address concepts associated with TEKS
4(A): add and subtract whole numbers and decimals to the
hundredths place using the standard algorithm.
Suppose these third and fourth grade teachers have
access to a classroom set of iPads, each equipped
with Brainingcamp's Base Ten Blocks App3. Figure 2
demonstrates how a teacher could use this application to
help students gain a better understanding of composing
tens when adding large numbers.

Figure 2: iPad applications can help students connect concrete concepts with procedural algorithms.

The teacher uses the addition function of
the Base Ten Blocks Manipulative App3,
which creates columns for each block and
row for the two addends and sum. The
teacher can help students explore how
the application can model these four digit
numbers.

The teacher demonstrates how the app
allows the user to compose tens by
highlighting a set of blocks, selecting a
function that composes blocks (in blue),
and recording the algorithmic procedure.

The teacher can then complete the sum,
using the app, while focusing on the
connection between the concrete model
and the abstract algorithm. This app
generates the composed blocks (in another
color), which helps students better
connect the concrete concept illustrated in
the blocks with the abstract recording of
the algorithm.

Thirdly, imagine a fifth or sixth grade teacher exploring algebraic patterns involving perimeter and strings of regular
polygons. The student objective is to determine a rule for the perimeter when any number of regular polygons are connected in a string. For the following examples, the teacher does not have any manipulatives of polygons with five or
seven sides, but has access to a single iPad that is equipped with the NumberKiz Pro App4. Figure 3 demonstrates how
a teacher could use the iPad to help students explore patterns and rules related to polygons and perimeter. A fifth grade
teacher could extend TEKS 4(H): represent and solve problems related to perimeter and/or area and related to volume,
while a sixth grade teacher could address the TEKS 6(B): write an equation that represents the relationship between independent and dependent quantities from a table.

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Spring/Summer 2018 | 19


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http://www.brightcopy.net/allen/txmt/67-01
http://www.brightcopy.net/allen/txmt/66-02
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http://www.brightcopy.net/allen/txmt/65-02
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