Hello again. Once more, a student has shown how working "smarter" makes for a better and more efficient math student!

In this example of our last homework, this student relied heavily on the "rules for divisibility" in order to make answering the divisibility questions a snap. In general, I am opposed to anything that smacks of being a math "trick" as an aid to completing math problems. However, the rules of divisibility are all based on sound math principles, and these rules do lead to more efficient and more accurate work. We rely heavily on these rules each day as we try to find common factors for the numerator and denominator of fractions. Right now, 5th grade students (and really 4th grade students) should know the "easy to use" divisibility rules for 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 9, and 10. The rule for 8 is also useful, but the rule for 7 is really too complex to use at this stage.

If you don't know the rules, please contact any worthy math teacher, student or the Internet for help:-}

I also have to comment that the Prime-Factor tree diagram shown is also a huge step towards understanding higher math. I also love PFTs , because they are lateral thinking exercises, as there are many paths to the correct answer. Again, ask a wise student to explain. The kids love doing these "puzzles" too!

Thanks for reading,

T-Cubed