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Pocket Calculators

J. Ethelberg-Laursen

In 1972, after four years of using mechanical calculators in my teaching now and again, I tried electronic calculators. It
was incontestable that they were a help in the classroom. They had a highly motivating effect on the pupils, and we could get through more problems than usual. All the energy could be used on solving the problems; the machines did the manual table-work. It was now appropriate to find out what one wanted from the machines, and at which stage to use them. If we were just to consider daily relief, their place would be in the top classes. If we were to pick up those pupils who had been lost at an earlier stage, the machines should be introduced with 13-year-olds. Or should we go all the way back to the primary classes and use them with 8-year-olds, where we start formalising multiplication, with the added advantage that we also have a year to introduce the machines before we start formalising division?

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