Even though mathematics is considered complicated, now there are many fun learning methods for students. Besides being fun, the effectiveness of today’s learning methods is also unquestionable. One method of learning mathematics that is effective is CPA (Concrete Pictorial Abstract). CPA (Concrete Pictorial Abstract) is a method or approach that will bring abstract material concepts into concrete situations. This method uses teaching aids or models to form a clearer, more detailed and interesting student understanding. In its application in mathematics lessons, the CPA method helps students understand abstract mathematical concepts through a concrete (real) stage, namely with real materials, then a semi-concrete stage alias can change a real model into a representation level using images, symbols, numbers, and notation.
The CPA method helps the teacher in delivering the material so that the students understand what is being conveyed. For example, in elementary school, approximately in grades 1-2 elementary school, there is usually a question of matching pictures with numbers. Finally, students understand the basic functions of mathematics. Besides being easy to understand, students know the purpose of the material presented will be useful for their lives. Both now and in the future.
In the teaching process, of course, educators have made the right time estimate. But it can’t be avoided if sometimes there are students who don’t understand the formula or the material given. The CPA method helps teachers in time efficiency, by providing a clear picture through a concrete model, so that students easily absorb what is conveyed. If time can be streamlined, the teacher does not need to give additional hours and can use the remaining time to practice student questions.
The CPA method in teaching mathematics can increase students’ creativity because each student gets a concrete picture, they will be able to analyze similar events or examples. For example, in the material about calculating the volume of a space, the teacher gives a model of pictures of the shape of a space. Students will be trained if they see cardboard, cans or real objects that have the shape of a space. They can express their creativity through early examples/models that are applied in everyday life.
Tips for Applying the CPA Method:
- Use a Cultural Approach for Learners
Each school, of course, has a different regional culture. Some live in Java, Kalimantan, Sulawesi, Papua, Sumatra, Bali and various regions in Indonesia. Of course it will have an impact on the daily life of each student. Although the material from the curriculum must be the same, students’ understanding of the CPA method can be mixed with the culture they adhere to. For example, in Bali, students can use pictures of several temples in math problems and the teacher asks students to count how many temples are in the picture. Another example is that the students are in Papua, the teacher can give a question in which students count how many Papuan animals are in the picture.
- Group Discussion
In addition to teaching teamwork, group assignments can help students open new insights in understanding the material presented. When discussing, students will receive various ideas from their teammates. This makes their picture of a material more in-depth and looks real.
- Use Interesting Media
Teachers must also continue to train their creativity. Follow the times so that students feel what they are being taught is really what they experience. Use interesting learning media, contemporary pictures, visuals that invite attention and make them not bored in class.