Ask Professor Puzzler
Do you have a question you would like to ask Professor Puzzler? Click here to ask your question!
We have a new math 6th grade series where Order of Operations has changed and PEMDAS is no longer the standard. Have you encountered this yet? We have Glenco, 6th grade. Multiplication and division still come before addition and substranction, however, now it works left to right whereas before it was multiplication before division.
In some areas of the world they use a different acronym (such as BODMAS or BEDMAS), but these are still the same thing as PEMDAS (Please Excuse My Dear Aunt Sally).
Believe it or not, the PEMDAS order of operations is not only still correct, but it's always been what you just described.
The acronym PEMDAS can be deceptive, if it’s not taught correctly. How it should be taught is:
P: Parenthesis first
E: Exponents next
MD: Multiplication and Division next
AS: Addition and Subtraction last
Notice that the M and D are grouped together, as are the A and S. This is because Multiplication and Division are at the same priority level, and should be done in left to right order. Likewise, Addition and Subtraction are at the same priority level, and should be done in left to right order.
Unfortunately, many teachers don’t realize this, and teach that all multiplication is done before all division, and all addition is done before all subtraction. I was taught that way all through elementary school, and it wasn’t until I hit Jr/Sr high that I found out that Multiplication and Division are at the same priority level, as are Addition and Subtraction.
If you are looking for a game that forces students to think through Order of Operations, here's a game I created several years ago: One To Ten.