# nea - Curriculum Support

```Newman’s error
analysis
Bernard Tola
Making mistakes
Students can make mistakes in answering
numeracy questions for different reasons.
Newman’s research elaborated the different
hurdles in answering a contextual word problem
that can cause students to stumble. Perhaps the
two hurdles currently best known by teachers are
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The hurdles
Newman identified that students may have
difficulty in
• reading the words,
• understanding what they have read,
• transforming what they have read so as to be
able to form a course of action,
• following through on procedures, or
• encoding the result of a procedure to answer
the question.
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The 5 steps
1. Read the question to me.
2. What is the question asking you to find
out?
3. What method did (could) you use?
4. Try doing it and as you are doing it tell
me what you are thinking.
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The purpose
1. Read the question to me.
2. What is the question asking
you to find out?
3. What method could you use
to get the answer?
4. Try doing it and as you are
doing it tell me what you are
thinking.
5. Now write down your
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Comprehension
Transformation
Process skills
Encoding
An example
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James
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Newman’s method in the classroom
Comprehension
Transformation
Process skills
Encoding
Which hurdle caused this student the most problems?
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Newman’s method in the classroom
In using Newman’s error analysis in the
classroom, it is recommended that you always go
at least one step past where the first error occurs.
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Eugenia
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Newman’s method in the classroom
Comprehension
Transformation
Process skills
Encoding
Which hurdle caused this student the most problems?
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Newman’s method in the classroom
Comprehension
Transformation
Process skills
Encoding
Where do you think this student had problems?
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Newman’s method in the classroom
Comprehension
Transformation
Process skills
Encoding
Where do you think this student had problems?
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Using Newman’s in the classroom
Suppose a student puts up his hand and says, “I
can’t do this question!”
Responding with a slight variation of Newman’s
five questions can help to identify where the
sticking point is.
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In the classroom
1. Read the question quietly to yourself and let
me know if you want help with any word.
2. Can you tell me what the question is asking
you to find out?
3. What could you do to get the answer?
4. Try doing it and as you are doing it tell me
what you are thinking.
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The first international cricket team to tour
England was an Aboriginal team. The team won
14 matches, drew 19 matches and lost 14
matches.
How many matches were played?
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Cassy’s written response
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Cassy
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Newman’s method in the classroom
Comprehension
Transformation
Processing skills
Encoding
Where do you think this student had problems?
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SNAP 2006
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One to ponder
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Want to find out more about NEA?
• http://www.curriculumsupport.education.nsw.g
ov.au/primary/mathematics/numeracy/newma
n/index.htm
• http://www.curriculumsupport.education.nsw.g
ov.au/secondary/mathematics/numeracy/new
man/index.htm
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```