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In the frame: A Remainder of One

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By Cherri Moseleyprimary teacher

Soldier Joe keeps being a remainder of one when his squadron lines up for parade. Can the children help him out?

A Remainder of One by Elinor J Pinczes, illustrated by Bonnie Mackain (Houghton Mifflin, ISBN 0395694558) is a fabulous book. Perfectly pitched for Key Stage 1 children, the mathematical content is intrinsic to the story and not simply an add-on. The main focus of the activities is on problem solving using multiplication and division, and division with remainders, but there are some useful data-handling activities too.

A remainder of one cover

Synopsis

The queen bug likes things tidy when her bug troops parade before her. But poor soldier Joe keeps messing things up by being a remainder of one. He tries various solutions to keep the squadron of 25 in equal lines and is a very happy bug when he solves the problem.

Read and enjoy the story with the children the day before you intend to use it for a mathematical focus. Have fun with the narrative, getting the children to join in on the obvious chorus and marching on the spot to:

'Hup, two, three, four!

We're in the 25th Army Corps.

Queen's count! Two, three!

We are the marching infantry.'
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