ERIC Number: ED364406
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1993-Apr
Reconstructing Mathematics Pedagogy from a Constructivist Perspective.
Simon, Martin A.
Constructivist epistemologies have been instrumental in recent research on mathematics learning and have provided a basis for recent mathematics education reform efforts. Although constructivism has the potential to inform changes in mathematics teaching, it offers no particular vision of how mathematics should be taught; models of teaching based on constructivism are needed. Data are presented from a whole-class teaching experiment in which constructivist perspectives encountered problems of teaching practice. The analysis of the data led to the development of a model of teacher decision making with respect to mathematical tasks. Central to this model is the creative tension between the teacher's goals for student learning and the responsibility to be sensitive and responsive to the mathematical thinking of the students. Themes represented include: (1) Students' thinking/understanding is taken seriously and given a central place in the design and implementation of instruction; (2) The teacher's knowledge evolves simultaneously with the growth in the students' knowledge; (3) Planning for instruction is seen as including the generation of a hypothetical learning trajectory; (4) The continually changing knowledge of the teacher creates continual change in the teacher's hypothetical learning trajectory. Contains 47 references. (Author/GW)
Descriptors: Area, Concept Teaching, Constructivism (Learning), Decision Making, Elementary School Mathematics, Elementary Secondary Education, Epistemology, Higher Education, Mathematics Instruction, Mathematics Teachers, Pedagogical Content Knowledge, Teacher Education, Teacher Role, Teaching Models
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: National Science Foundation, Washington, DC.
Authoring Institution: N/A