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ERIC Number: EJ1152711
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2017
Pages: 19
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-1442-3901
A Specialist Professional Experience Learning Community for Primary Pre-Service Teachers Focussed on Mathematical Problem Solving
Cavanagh, Michael; McMaster, Heather
Mathematics Teacher Education and Development, v19 n1 p47-65 2017
Problem solving has been identified as an important approach to learning and teaching mathematics, yet many primary pre-service teachers (PSTs) struggle to implement it during their professional experience. In this paper, we report the experiences of a group of four primary PSTs who, in an additional professional experience placement, formed a learning community for teaching mathematical problem-solving lessons to a composite Year 5/6 class. The PSTs visited the school each fortnight over a school term to observe an experienced teacher teaching problem-solving lessons. They then co-taught the same class using a problem-solving approach and observed their peers co-teaching. We report the reflections of these PSTs and evaluate various aspects of the professional experience learning community. The results indicate that membership of the learning community gave the PSTs the opportunity to think more deeply about problem-solving lessons through the lens of a teacher and it assisted the development of their knowledge, skills and confidence in teaching such lessons. The results also indicate that having had this experience, PSTs are more likely to test and develop their skills in teaching problem-solving lessons in future professional experience placements.
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: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Higher Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Australia
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A