The Role of Calculators in Everyday Mathematics
Based on research showing that the use of calculators can enhance students' performance in number sense, conceptual development, and visualization, the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics recommends the integration of calculators into mathematics programs for all grade levels (NCTM, 1998). In turn, Everyday Mathematics offers appropriate applications for calculators at each grade level.
In the Everyday Mathematics program, emphasis is placed on using the calculator as a tool for learning mathematics. In kindergarten, for example, calculators add a visual dimension to oral counting routines as children count forwards and backwards by 1s, 2s, 5s, and 10s. Seeing the numbers on the calculator display as they count also helps children learn written number sequences.
In first and later grades, students play a calculator game called Beat the Calculator. This game challenges students to develop automatic recall of basic addition and multiplication facts, and demonstrates why developing quick mental skills is better than always relying on a calculator.
The Everyday Mathematics program also includes a number of calculator games designed to provide practice with place value and problem-solving skills
The Everyday Mathematics student materials also include exercises for which it would be inappropriate to use calculators. These exercises are clearly marked with "no calculator" icons.
National Council of Teachers of Mathematics. (1998). Position statement: Calculators and the education of youth. Reston, VA: Author.