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ERIC Number: EJ1175505
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2018
Pages: 6
Abstractor: ERIC
ISSN: ISSN-1326-0286
Challenging Tasks Lead to Productive Struggle!
Livy, Sharyn; Muir, Tracey; Sullivan, Peter
Australian Primary Mathematics Classroom, v23 n1 p19-24 2018
Productive struggle leads to productive classrooms where students work on complex problems, are encouraged to take risks, can struggle and fail yet still feel good about working on hard problems (Boaler, 2016). Teachers can foster a classroom culture that values and promotes productive struggle by providing students with challenging tasks. These tasks are designed in such a way that they are accessible to all students and the expectation is that everyone will persist when solving challenging mathematical tasks. This article looks at examples of challenging mathematical tasks designed to enable students of all abilities to experience productive struggle, and examines the lesson structure and teacher's role when implementing a challenging task, along with students' responses to being challenged through the tasks. It adds to existing research on challenging tasks, including in previous editions of "Australian Primary Mathematics Classroom" (APMC) (e.g., Cheeseman, Clarke, Roche, & Walker, 2016; Roche & Clarke, 2014; Russo, 2016) through challenging tasks being used to evoke productive struggle, and illustrative examples of what productive struggle 'looks like.'
Australian Association of Mathematics Teachers (AAMT). Tel: +61-8-8363-0288; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Grade 5; Intermediate Grades; Middle Schools; Elementary Education
Audience: Teachers
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Australia
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A