WEDWK? Or… ‘What Else Do We Know?’

~~It’s one of those dreaded acronyms, buzz words and well-worn phrases that blight our screens and twitter feeds.~~

Actually… I made it up*

But WEDWK? (pronounced ‘wedwik’) has come in very useful in my KS2 teaching. It is a quick (and rather lazy) way of prompting deeper thinking and numerical fluency.

__Example 1:__

Pupils have been given a warm-up test of multiplication facts. They complete the test as quickly and accurately as possible, but are then asked to choose one fact, e.g. **4 x 8 = 32**, and set up a WEDWK? bubble to generate related facts. The obvious, inverse-operational ones should necessarily come first, i.e. **8 x 4 = 32,**** ****32 ÷ 4 = 8**** **and** ****32 ÷ 8 = 4**

So far, so standard, right?

But then they should be encouraged to take the fact a step further and begin to relate it to all the other operations:

**4 + 4 + 4 + 4 + 4 + 4 + 4 + 4 = 32
**

**8 + 8 + 8 + 8 = 32**

**32 – 8 – 8 – 8 – 8 = 0**

**32 – (8 x 4) = 0**

**8 + (8 x 3) = 32**

**(7 x 4) + 4 = 32**

They may then extend to shifting the digits to incorporate decimal fractions and large numbers:

**0.8 x 4 = 3.2
**

**32 ÷ 0.4 = 80**

**3.2 ÷ 8 = 0.4**

80 x 400 = 32,000

80 x 400 = 32,000

…And then they may explore links to whichever areas of maths they need to practise: a pupil who struggles with fractions may explore this meaning by drawing diagrams:

**32 ÷ 4 = 32/4**

Or a child who struggles with area may draw, annotate and tinker with compound and regular shapes whose area is **32 cm ^{2.}**

You get the picture.

__Example 2:__

When marking any child’s maths work, preferably alongside them in class, I simply write ‘WEDWK?’ next to an answer, particularly if it has come as a result of a paired discussion (or is devoid of written workings).

So, when their answer to…

**Mr Dexter buys a TV and a bike
**

**The TV costs £130 more than the bike.**

**Their total cost is £420.**

**How much does the TV cost?**(White Rose problem)

**TV = £275**

… is recorded, they are allowed to deepen their understanding with WEDWK? statements.

**Bike is £145
B = T+130**

**Two bikes and two TVs would be double £420 = £840**

Or, better still, they write further questions to test on a classmate:

**If the total cost was reduced by £100 but the difference between costs was still £130, how would the prices of the bike and TV adjust?
A 25% sale starts. Does the word problem above still make sense? Explain why/why not.**

**WEDWK?** It’s a fluency-encourager, a deep-thinking-prompter and a humble insight into the interconnectedness of knowledge. Try it!

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This was my first blog. Any constructive comments or thoughts you have are very welcome.

** No, really – I did. It started out as ‘WEDIK’ (‘What Else Do I Know?’), but 5 minutes into its introduction to a lively class, I changed the personal pronoun. **But yes, it’s based on well-trodden teaching principles and in no way revolutionary or particularly clever. It’s just memorable and useful.*