The Value of Approximate Thinking

By Kristin Sanderson

While last week Diane and Jeri’s fifth and sixth graders used approximate thinking to understand rough estimates of money raised for Unicef, this week children completed long division equations as exact calculations. In practicing both approximate thinking and exact thinking, Miquon children have the ability to make quick calculations in their head (what we call mental math) to get a general idea of a value, and also the ability to determine a concrete number value. Pictured here, children share the batting averages they calculated in decimal form to the thousandth place from their own stacks of baseball cards.


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