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ERIC Number: ED573304
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2012-Jul
Pages: 8
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: 28
The Hammer-and-Nail Phenomenon in Mathematics Education
Lim, Kien H.
Mathematics Education Research Group of Australasia, Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the Mathematics Education Research Group of Australasia (MERGA) (35th, Singapore, Jul 2-6, 2012)
This paper uses the hammer-and-nail metaphor to highlight the rigidity and impulsiveness that can be found in student mathematical behaviour. The hammer-and-nail phenomenon can be attributed to two plausible causes: (1) the way the human mind works; and (2) the way mathematics is traditionally taught in school. In this paper, the following aspects of the hammer-and-nail metaphor are discussed: (1) its origin and its usefulness; (2) its manifestations among learners of mathematics; (3) related literature; (4) pedagogical causes; and (5) suggestions for teaching.
Mathematics Education Research Group of Australasia. GPO Box 2747, Adelaide SA 5001, Australia. Tel: +61-8-8363-0288; Fax: +61-8-8362-9288; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: Mathematics Education Research Group of Australasia