This question concerns “bearing off”. I was taught you MUST bear off, if you can. If not, you MUST move a man (or, men) down. Each die is considered separately for purposes of bearing off. In other words, a roll of 4-2 does not make 6! However, my wife says all the electronic versions of the game she’s seen on smart phones permits you the option to bear off OR move men down. And, one set of rules I Googled up claims you CAN bear off one piece by adding the dice. For example, if the roll is 2-1, and you have a man on the 3 slot, you do not need an exact three on one die to bear off*. I would say it depends. First, you MUST consider each die separately, bearing off what you can. If you can bear off, you must. Then, with the balance of your move, if any, you can move a man down.
Also, were you taught you MUST move down the furthest men first? For example, you cannot selectively (and strategically) keep loading up men at the “one” slot using the roll of the dice in this advantageous way. Instead, I was taught you MUST move down in priority starting with the furthest (six) slot, and regressively on down to the “one” slot.
What finer points were you taught, if any?
*One caveat: Technically, the online rules I Googled explain you are not bearing off directly, but moving the number shown on each die separately. The point here is if your opponent occupies the “one” slot, you are blocked (unless you can remove your opponent) and cannot bear-off.