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ERIC Number: EJ1235673
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2019-Dec
Pages: 16
Abstractor: As Provided
ISBN: N/A
ISSN: ISSN-1492-6156
EISSN: N/A
Re-Thinking 'Concrete to Abstract' in Mathematics Education: Towards the Use of Symbolically Structured Environments
Coles, Alf; Sinclair, Nathalie
Canadian Journal of Science, Mathematics and Technology Education, v19 n4 p465-480 Dec 2019
In this article, we question the prevalent assumption that teaching and learning mathematics should always entail movement from the concrete to the abstract. Such a view leads to reported difficulties in students moving from manipulatives and models to more symbolic work, moves that many students never make, with all the implications this has for life chances. We propose working in 'symbolically structured environments' as an alternative way of characterising students' direct engagement with the abstract and exemplify two such environments, both of which involve early number learning. We additionally propose some roles for the teacher working in a symbolically structured environment.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A