Acronyms like RUCSAC prevent children from thinking mathematically – we need a different approach

I’ve got a thing about success criteria. Very often, the line between what we want children to learn to do and the task that we ask them to carry out is blurred. The gap is perhaps most stark when it comes to problem-solving in maths.

In many classrooms the “read, underline, calculate, solve, answer, check” (RUCSAC) acronym, or something similar, will be plastered on the wall and used as success criteria for problem-solving.

However, I’d argue that RUCSAC does not present a valid set of criteria for such an important part of maths; rather it prevents children from learning to think mathematically. Here’s why…

Read the rest of the article here.

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1 Comment

Filed under CPD, Maths

One response to “Acronyms like RUCSAC prevent children from thinking mathematically – we need a different approach

  1. Completely agree. Also, by limiting a problem to a handful of key words you have not considered its entire meaning within context, contexts which often exclude some readers. Equally, language in r cent end of key stage two tests have an implied, rather than direct mathematical meaning and this together with instructional language can further confuse the decoding.
    This is an area I have looked at for a number of years and working in schools in Hillingdon and Slough, I’d be keen to share ideas.

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