Mistakes are a part of math. When students learn to "diagnose" an error and remedy it, they become more proficient mathematicians! One step is to determine if it is a Band-Aid mistake with a quick fix, or a broken arm in need of some more serious learning.
Growth mindset advocates also assert that the brain grows more when an error is detected and fixed. It is up to teachers to create classroom climates that accept math errors as a crucial part of learning.
This is a great lesson at the start of the year! This product offers a lesson about the 2 types of errors, and includes examples of each. Also, there are slides that lead to healthy discussion about the value of mistakes in mathematics. The lesson is available in 2 formats - Smartboard or Powerpoint.
There is a partner activity called "You be the Doctor!" This printable requires students to examine sample work and determine what type of error is present. Then they are required to describe what went wrong and how to fix it.
Sample answer key also provided!