List the three main mathematical operations involved in long division. They are division, multiplication and subtraction, in that order. These three operations are repeated until the process is finished.
Long division uses arithmetic to show the steps in a division problem. Children typically learn about long division in elementary school, after they learned regular division. Long division can seem intimidating because of the number of steps and mathematical operations. A few teaching methods can help make long division easier for youths to understand.
Things You'll Need
- Math book
Present the students with a simple division problem, such as 10 / 2 = 5, and explain to that they will use the same method for long division. Comparing long division to an earlier lesson aids in comprehension.
Present the students with a simple long division problem, such as 100 / 2. Explain that the problem will be done step by step, analyzing each digit of the dividend. For example, the first digit of the dividend is 1. Two is not divisible by one, so the student should place a 0 above the 1.
Take the second digit of the dividend into consideration, and tell students that they need to determine how many times 2 can multiply to make 10. The answer is 5. So, 5 is placed over the zero of the dividend.
Multiply the 5 by the 2. The answer is 10, which should be placed under the first two digits of the dividend. Tell students that multiplication is part of the process -- it's used to determine remainders. Since 10 - 10 = 0, there are no remainders for that part of the problem.
Draw an arrow that points down from the third 0 of the dividend, to the 0 of the subtraction problem. Explain that bringing down the other digits is necessary in order to repeat the previous steps. For example, the 2 is not divisible by 0, so a 0 is written over the third digit of the dividend. Zero is then multiplied by 2. The answer is 0, and 0 - 0 = 0, so this problem has no remainders. The answer is 50.
Write incomplete examples on the board and let students describe the next steps. This method will test students' comprehension.
Give practice problems with and without remainders. Put the students in groups of two. One student can write out the problem, while the other makes sure that the steps are followed correctly. The students can switch roles.
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