ERIC Number: ED341574
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1991-Oct
Reference Count: N/A
Conceptions of Problem Solving in Commonly Used and Distinctive Elementary Mathematics Curricula. Elementary Subjects Center Series, No. 43.
One of the five goals proposed in the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics' (NCTM) "Curriculum and Evaluation Standards for School Mathematics" is for students to become "mathematical problem solvers." To achieve this goal, the NCTM proposes fundamental changes in both the content of mathematics curricula and the pedagogy of the mathematics classroom that outline a broad role for problem solving. Textbooks and other published curricula are believed to play a significant role in the classroom instruction of mathematical problem solving. Described and compared are the conceptions of problem solving found in one commonly used elementary mathematics textbook ("Addison-Wesley Mathematics") and three distinctive elementary mathematics curricula ("Real Math", "Comprehensive School Mathematics Program", and "Math in Stride"). Although in each, problem solving was professed to be of central importance to the development of mathematical understanding and competence, how problem solving is defined and taught varied amongst the four published curricula. The different ways that problem solving is defined, formulated, and taught are explored, and the pedagogical and epistemological assumptions that underlie these differences are also discussed. The four curricula are compared on various perspectives of problem solving, the levels at which it was incorporated into the curriculum and how the authors of each curriculum viewed "mathematics as problem solving." (14 references) (MDH)
Descriptors: Content Analysis, Curriculum Evaluation, Elementary Education, Elementary School Mathematics, Learning Strategies, Mathematics Curriculum, Mathematics Education, Mathematics Instruction, Problem Solving, Textbook Content, Textbook Evaluation, Thinking Skills, Word Problems (Mathematics)
Institute for Research on Teaching, 252 Erickson Hall, Michigan University, East Lansing, MI ($4.00).
Publication Type: Reports - Descriptive; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: Office of Educational Research and Improvement (ED), Washington, DC.
Authoring Institution: Center for the Learning and Teaching of Elementary Subjects, East Lansing, MI.