Learning from Maths Mistakes

The types of errors students make can generate valuable insight into what the student may be thinking. The idea here is that each post will be a selection of student work. The community of FYiMaths lectures are then invited to comment  and discuss the following:

  • What does the student know?
  • What mistake has the student made? Or what does the student not understand?
  • How would you help?

The purpose is to provide teachers with a bank of student errors to help future planning. Knowing the types of errors students will likely make, how would you modify current lectures to address the misconnception/error?

In order to keep this discussion fruitful, we would love for you to submit errors your students are making as well to fyimathsproject@gmail.com

Note: to keep students anonymous, their responses have been re-written.

 

Error 1 – Multiplying complex numbers

01 complex numbers

What do you think? What does the student know, what misconception might they have, and how would you help them?

Error 2 – Magnitude of speed

02 magnitude of speed

Here the student is asked to find when the speed is decreasing in the context of vectors. There’s all sorts of issues going on here!

What does the student know? What error or misconception does the student have? What advice would you give this student to address their misconceptions?

Error 3 – Area enclosed between curves

20170919_14021020170919_140216

What does the student know? What error or misconception does the student have? What advice would you give this student to address their misconceptions?

Post your comments below!