Can Minimal Support for Teachers Make a Difference to Students’ Understanding of Decimals?

Sue Helme, Kaye Stacey


This study investigated whether new teaching resources and minimal support could
help teachers make a difference to children’s understanding of decimal numeration.
Three schools were offered resources and a professional development session
specifically to address the common misconceptions children have about decimal
numbers. One school agreed to participate, and four teachers were supplied with the
resources. Use of the resources was unexpectedly low, but teachers who used them
achieved an educationally and statistically significant improvement in decimal
understanding, indicating that a small amount of deliberate attention to decimal
concepts can make a difference.


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