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ERIC Number: EJ1161255
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2017-Dec
Pages: 19
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-1571-0068
Making Associativity Operational
Asghari, Amir H.; Khosroshahi, Leyla G.
International Journal of Science and Mathematics Education, v15 n8 p1559-1577 Dec 2017
The purpose of this paper is to propose an "operational" idea for developing algebraic thinking in the absence of alphanumeric symbols. The paper reports on a design experiment encouraging preschool children to use the associative property algebraically. We describe the theoretical basis of the design, the tasks used, and examples of algebraic thinking in 5-6-year-old children. Theoretically, the paper makes a critical distinction between operational and structural meanings of the notion of equality. We argue that mathematical thinking involving equality among young learners can comprise both an operational and a structural conception and that the operational conception has a side that is productively linked to the structural conception. Using carefully designed hands-on tasks, the crux of the paper is the realization of algebraic thinking (in verbal mathematics) as operationally experienced in the ability to transform one number structure, with a quantity that is subject to change, into another through equality-preserving transformations.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A