Do your Student Learn or Mug up? Students of all ages seem to have a mind of their own when it comes to responding to any situation or performing any task. As teachers, most of us go back home thinking that our students have understood every concept that we teach them. It is only when we test them that we find that some concepts have not been understood as clearly as they should have been. It is this desire to understand student thinking that prompted us to examine ASSET questions of the past rounds, in Maths, examining the most common wrong answers to understand what could have made students select the options they did.
Measurement,DataInterpretation/Analysis: Averages and Graph Reading Class 4
Why was the question asked? This question tests if the students understand the idea that more than one unit of something can be represented by one symbol in a pictograph. 2. What did students answer? 26% of students answered D, correctly, and 61% have chosen the most common wrong answer, A. Possible reason for choosing A: These students have just counted the saplings shown in the figure and answered 16. They may feel that each symbol stands for one sapling. They have either failed to notice the key given alongside or are unable to understand what it means. Possible reasons for choosing B & C: Very few students have chosen this option and may be making a random guess.
3. Learnings In order to be able to use and understand a pictograph, students should understand that • A symbol in a pictograph represents one item or many items. • Within a pictograph, a symbol always represents the same number of items. • Sometimes fractional parts of symbols may be used in a pictograph. For example the symbol given in this question represents 4 saplings, so we may use half of it to represent 2 saplings. The response to this question indicates that students have not grasped the idea that a symbol in a pictograph can stand for more than one of something. They have probably not been exposed to such pictographs.
4. How do we Handle this? The first step in understanding a pictograph is to know that a symbol can stand for a quantity. The best way to teach data interpretation is with a situation that involves the students and has questions that are relevant to them. Activity: The teacher may make a column on the black board with different colors on it. She may ask the students about their favorite colors, and draw a small face against a color, to represent that it is the favorite of 1 child. In a class of 40 students she may have a table like the following.