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Math for Kids23 chapters | 325 lessons

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Lesson Transcript

Instructor:
*Kathleen Laib*

I have been a teacher for 10 years with eight of those years teaching 4th grade. I have a master's of Ed and an ELL Endorsement.

This lesson will define a standard algorithm, as well as show examples of the standard algorithms for addition and multiplication. If you follow the steps correctly, it's as easy as baking a cake!

A **standard algorithm** is a step-by-step way to solve a problem. Here we are going to focus on what a standard algorithm is for basic multi-digit math, although there are many, many algorithms to solve all kinds of different problems.

First, let's take it out of math and put it to use for something simple, like baking a cake. Baking a cake is not really an algorithm, but it is a step-by-step system to solve a problem: not having cake. That's a pretty big problem! There are certain steps that you need to follow to have your cake come out of the oven just right, just like there are steps to solve math problems. So the step-by-step way to bake a cake is: get your ingredients, mix your ingredients in the right order and by measuring them carefully, put the cake mix into a pan, then bake it for a set amount of time, let it cool, then frost it, pretty simple.

But what happens if you do the steps out of order? If you put your ingredients in the bowl to mix them, then try to measure them, you might not get the right amount in the mix. If you bake all the ingredients before you mix them, they won't come together properly, and they would be really hot when you tried to put them in the bowl to mix. Following each step in the process is really important if you want your cake to come out right. It is exactly the same for a standard algorithm in math.

The nice thing about the standard algorithms for addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division is that you are basically doing the same step over and over with each place value column in the problem.

The step-by-step process to use the standard algorithm for addition is pretty simple. The same process is repeated for each place value column until all columns have been added. Make sure to carry the 10 over any time a column adds to more than 10 so that it can be counted with the next place value column. It is important to do each step in order, starting with the ones place value column, or, just like your cake, the answer will not come out correctly.

The step-by-step process for single-digit multiplication follows a similar process. Just like addition, the process is based on place value. For multiplication, however, instead of doing math only within each place value column, the math will happen between the place value columns. You will also use the same number over and over, which can feel weird sometimes. The bottom number (in green) will be multiplied with each place value column on the top, starting with the ones and moving through the place value columns in order until all have been multiplied with the bottom number.

There likely will be some carrying or regrouping that will need to happen, because most of the time when you multiply two single-digit numbers, you get a two-digit number. Anytime you get a two-digit number, you will need to carry the tens over to the next place value column to be added in after you multiply for the next column. Once again, if you do the steps out of order, you will not get the correct answer.

**Standard algorithms** give us a step-by-step system to solve math problems. Follow the steps carefully, and you'll get the right answer every time.

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Math for Kids23 chapters | 325 lessons

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