Selecting Tools to Model Integer and Binomial Multiplication

Sarah Smitherman Pratt, Colleen M. Eddy

Abstract


Mathematics teachers frequently provide concrete manipulatives to students during instruction; however, the rationale for using certain manipulatives in conjunction with concepts may not be explored. This article focuses on area models that are currently used in classrooms to provide concrete examples of integer and binomial multiplication. The innovation of combining the representations for negative numbers with both algebra tiles and Algeblocks is provided, with a mathematical justification for its development. Teachers’ effective integration of tools such as these in mathematics instruction can help students develop conceptual understanding and procedural fluency. 


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