Sunday, 31 March 2013

Chapter 1: Teaching Mathematics in the 21st Century

Reading Reflections

"In this changing world, those who understand and can do mathematics will have significantly enhanced opportunities and options for shaping their future." NCTM (2000, p. 50)

It is important for teachers to be able to focus on mathematical thinking and reasoning as they prepare to help students learn mathematics. When teachers understand and apply the Principles and Standards for School Mathematics in the school curriculum by integrating it with other subjects, they provide a rich and meaningful mathematics education for the children.

Mathematics is not just about knowing and calculating numbers, but  learning it "with understanding, actively building new knowledge from experience and prior knowledge." NCTM (2000, p. 20)
It requires children to base their learning on the Five Process Standards which include:
  • Problem solving
  • Reasoning and proof
  • Communication
  • Connections
  • Representation
As the teacher uses these processes in her mathematics classroom, there is coherence and comprehension taking place. Children learn to draw knowledge from prior experiences and make connections to new ideas through reasoning and communications as they problem solve.

Teachers who understand the pedagogy behind teaching mathematics to young children, strive to create an environment that will offer and encourage all children with equal opportunities to learn. this can be achieved through the use of different media, such as technology, reasoning, communications, and reflections. As children interact with the different media available, they become exposed to using strategies to derive answers rather than focus on only "one right answer".

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