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ERIC Number: ED545439
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2012
Pages: 186
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: N/A
ISBN: 978-1-2675-4827-6
The Impact of a Geometry Curriculum on Sixth Grade African-American Males
Adefope, Olufunke
ProQuest LLC, Ph.D. Dissertation, Indiana University
This dissertation was conducted in a gendered academy in a low-income community in northern Indiana. The study examined how involvement with inquiry-based mathematical tasks embedded in a curricular unit impacted the geometric reasoning of elementary aged African-American males. The curriculum included activities focused on angles, lines and quadrilaterals. Students explored these concepts through concrete manipulatives (mira, protractors, clocks, and geo-boards) and dynamic geometry software (Geometer's Sketchpad). The data (student interviews and video-recordings of classroom episodes) were primarily analyzed using qualitative methods with the intent of developing understandings of how geometric reasoning was supported through the tasks embedded in the curriculum. The effectiveness of various pedagogical strategies used by the classroom teacher was also analyzed to gauge impact in students' learning. Findings include the fact that the elementary aged African-American males in the study developed an understanding of angles and lines. Prior to the implementation of the unit, students described angles as degrees or listed different types of angles and had difficulty distinguishing between different types of lines and segments. By the end of the study, they were able to articulate that an angle is the space embedded within line segments on a ray and could describe line segments and rays along with parallel and perpendicular lines. Students struggled to understand relationships among quadrilaterals. Analysis of the data revealed that they did not have a sufficient understanding of the properties necessary for them to evaluate the inter-relationships among different quadrilaterals. Contrary to what might have been expected given the master-narratives that lament the under-performance and lack of motivation of African-American males, the young males in this study improved in their understanding of geometry. Additionally, they were highly motivated to learn. The dynamic structure of Geometer's Sketchpad, the cognitive tool used in the study, played an important role in engaging the students. [The dissertation citations contained here are published with the permission of ProQuest LLC. Further reproduction is prohibited without permission. Copies of dissertations may be obtained by Telephone (800) 1-800-521-0600. Web page:]
ProQuest LLC. 789 East Eisenhower Parkway, P.O. Box 1346, Ann Arbor, MI 48106. Tel: 800-521-0600; Web site:
Publication Type: Dissertations/Theses - Doctoral Dissertations
Education Level: Elementary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Indiana