This approach:

- Uses a calculator.
- Uses just one single approach for all problems (long side or short)
- Reduces the number of steps by rooting and adding in the same step.
- Keeps to an absolute minimum, the need to compare sizes, because Dyscalculia makes this challenging.
- Uses a mnemonic to recall the steps.

Method:

Normally in a problem involving Pythagoras, you are given 2 of the sides of a right angled triangle and asked to find the third. You need to Root the Add of the Squares (R.A.S, end of PythagoRAS). Always key in the larger number first….

This will give the answer 8.0622..

but Perhaps You Takeaway (PYThagoras) so mouse back to the plus (+) and change it to a take away (-)… and this gives 5.7445..

Now it’s decision time – using the picture, which answer looks most sensible, 8.0622 or 5.7445? The length of the 3rd side in this example is clearly longer than 7 so the correct answer is 8.0622.

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This event has been organised by the NCETM. It is a regular discussion hour for Maths Teachers but this topic is bound to attract parents, sufferers, and other interested Tweeters – they are welcome too. Teachers don’t have a monopoly on good ideas!

# Can I take part?

Yes. If you tweet between 7 and 8 this evening **using the tag #mathscpdchat** then your tweet will automatically form part of the discussion. Sign into twitter then click here to take part.

# Can I listen in, without being a Twitter user?

Yes you are welcome. The window below will display the tweets in real time. (But joining twitter is really easy – why not create your own ID and join us?)

# The discussion – a window on twitter

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## Bespoke Maths uition for struggling pupils