We don't think about foundations because they're invisible. They were put in place early on, then built over with something splendid. Foundations in maths are just like building foundations - important.
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A "visual model" can be as simple as a using the slices of a cake to represent fractions, but they can explain some pretty complex ideas in advanced maths too. This article explores a few of the visual models we use in primary maths.
Award winning home learning for ages 5-11 on tablet and laptop.