Year 5

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We can explain each step when we write addition calculations in columns using the compact method with whole numbers and decimals with up to two places

Year 5 Unit 4b

What we are learning:

  • Once children have a clear understanding of the place value of decimal numbers, they can use the compact method for decimal calculations.
    E.g. 14.25 + 3.79

  • You need to make sure that your child understands the value of each digit in each number so that they can line them up correctly when they write them down.
  • If you need to write down the numbers in the correct columns for your child to model the process that is fine at the beginning.
  • Sometimes it is helpful to practise writing down these types of calculations without working out the answers, just to ensure your child knows how to record them.

Activities you can do at home:

Try adding some decimal numbers together using the compact method.
Make sure that your child sets them out correctly before they start adding, i.e. that the decimal points are vertically above one another.

2.83 + 3.5
3.6 +8.88
39.44 + 3.59
48.0 + 0.38

Good questions to ask:

Can you explain why you have written the numbers down in these columns?

If your child:

Sets the calculation out incorrectly and does not align the decimal points
Talk about the numbers you are adding and read them aloud together. This will help identify which columns they need to be written in. If it helps, label the columns for reassurance.

Extension Activity

Please use this activity when you think your child understands the unit of work. It will deepen and extend your child’s understanding of this unit.


Extension activity (PDF)