Life long sharing . . .

Posts Tagged ‘Maths

I like this explanation of the difference of Combination and Permutation. A good intro.




Notes: Permutation_and_Combination_Notes.pdf

As school is almost over, I started to let Ling do some exercises using Singapore syllabus.

Using this book for her Math Word Problem:

Got a surprise on first chapter, that at Primary 1, they already start learning multi-level word problems.


Ya, I kind of agree with another mummy who discovered this earlier, that this kind of two-level/two-step word problems do help boost a child’s critical thinking and logical analytic skill. She also shared in her post some of the useful source for story problems, You can check it out at:


The way Global Math charges is 24 lessons for RM500+ to be completed in 6 months time. The lesson is counted based on attendance. The trick is “must complete in 6 months time“. Any outstanding lessons will be burnt, UNLESS you sign up for another package (pay another 500+ for another 24 lessons to be completed in 6 months time).

Last year Ling and Ying has about 10 days outstanding lessons, each, get burnt, as I am thinking to stop the class for a while, so that Ling can rest and re-adjust to her new primary school life style, then only decide.

Now I count count count, wah lau, … I am actually almost paying double. 14 lessons for RM500+ instead of 24 lessons.

Careless me. . . Now feel bad for wasting the money. Unless I sign up another package… but then need to make sure they complete 24 + 10 lessons in 6 months time. Have to go for the classes more than once a week, then only can fully utilize the 34 lessons paid. . . . But more than once a week is a bit tough, a bit overload for Ling, tough for me logistic wise …

m m … Will ask the girls tonight whether they want to continue.


It’s been more than a year the girls attend the mental arithmetic class. After some adjustment, changing of the time (from weekday afternoon (their nap time) to weekend morning session), the girls are doing fine.

Ying progressed a bit slow previously and now she is picking up. For abacus, she is doing arithmetic for 2-digit numbers in 3 row , and she has started with mental arithmetic also. Ling is doing arithmetic for 2-digit numbers in 5 rows, and mental arithmetic in 5 rows. How do I find about this class? I think so far, the progress that I can see thus far is speed.

Recently had a chance to chit-chat with the teacher who recommended me this program. Her two daughters are doing fine as well. Her elder daughter who is in primary school now can solve math question in school superbly fast and accurate. Here is her comment that she shared based on her experience in teaching.

If a child is smart, mental arithmetic class can help stimulate their brain if they start young. And smart children somehow are able to understand and relate what they learn from mental arithmetic, and apply / use it in their school mathematics. 

But if a child is not smart, already very confuse about mathematics, then they shouldn’t take up this class. It will make them more confused. They should go for other class to help them build the mathematics foundation. 

Just some sharing.

Updates: may be some example of the confusion using abacus that I see.

To solve the question 17 -8,  for the right hand side (7-8), to do that using abacus, the child need to remember, -8 is -10 + 2. So they will minus one bead on the left, and add 2 beads on the right. Then only the answer 9 is shown on the abacus.

Another example, to do 15 + 7, in abacus, +7 is -3 + 10. They need to minus 3 beads from the right and add one bead to the left. But on a 5-beads abacus, to minus 3 from 5, one more formula to use, -3 equals -5 + 2, so for this question, the child needs to minus the top bead representing the 5, and add 2 beads to the bottom on the right hand side, and add one bead to the left hand side, to come to the answer 22.

Initially when doing their school math homework, when come to similar question, the girls will ask me how should they do it. In their kindy, teacher taught them to put up 8 using their fingers and count backward for subtraction: 16,15,14,13,12,11,10, 9. So I choose to tell them, “Either way also can. You decide. Which one is faster or easier for you.”  All these just happen initially, a few times only. Now they no longer confuse and ask such questions, and they can complete their math questions without help, and quite fast also.

Some how I agree with the teacher’s comment that if the child couldn’t even understand what subtraction is, and yet, need to figure out whether to use -10+3 or -3 + 10 for -7, or -5 + 2 + 10 for + 7, that will be too much for him.her.

But again, I didn’t learn abacus nor mental arithmetic during my school time, no tuition some more, and I always score A in my maths. 😛


Today I am going to share a little about this cool Maths site: (

It provides interactive practise/exercises on Maths, from grade Pre-K to 8. I believe it’s based on US syllabus, if I am not mistaken.

Do you know, everyday, you can get 20 questions free exercise ? But of course, you need to pay if you need more.

I used to go there, check out those example exercises, on topics that are not covered in Malaysia syllabus. For example, the counting by 2, counting by 5,.. these topics are not taught in my girls’ Kindergarten (but I remember Tweedle Wink has it).

One day, as Ying was doing her homework, she flipped through her book, checking on the Table of Contents, and she came to me,

“Mummy, these are counting by 2, right?”

Good catch Ying 🙂


After so many posts on Global Maths Mental Arithmetics, I feel like I need to clarify that, it doesn’t mean that Global Maths is the best of all in Maths and a must go. There are a lot of Maths classes like Kumon, Enopi, Math Monkey, etc out there.

We visited some, and we like some other class as much as we like Global Maths. Just that after all the survey, we choose this one as it is the best fit.

We actually like Enopi a lot. Just that the center most convenient to us, we don’t quite like the environment and the teachers there. My husband even commented, “If only we can sign up to get the worksheets they are using, you can teach them yourself at home.” …

Ya, if I have not spent my money on the previous Reading center, I might consider taking up this Franchise… after all I like teaching, I like beautiful pictures and I love Maths. If you compare Enopi worksheets and Kumon one, they are more lively for younger children, as there are colourful drawings used in the questions.

But but, that doesn’t mean Kumon is not good. I witness a boy having trouble with Maths when he was 6 years old, after a year in Kumon, now he is doing fraction, already passes those +, -, x, ÷.  I remember a comment from a Kumon center’s Principal, the program really required discipline and determination. She sees a lot of children make it through but also has students, already standard 5 still not able to do the +, -, x, ÷ properly. And similarly, Kumon is solving on the formula questions, not on 应用题。

If you are interested in Maths, the next thing you can check it out is the Maths Olympiad.


April 2020

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