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ERIC Number: EJ747865
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2004
Pages: 22
Abstractor: Author
Reference Count: 26
ISSN: ISSN-1033-2170
Understanding Linear Measurement: A Comparison of Filipino and New Zealand Children
Irwin, Kathryn C.; Vistro-Yu, Catherine P.; Ell, Fiona R.
Mathematics Education Research Journal, v16 n2 p3-24 2004
An understanding of linear measurement depends on principles that include standard unit size, iteration of units, numbering of a unit at its end, and partial units for measuring continuous length. Children may learn these principles at school, for example through experience with informal measurement, or they may learn them through use of measurement in society. This study compared the application of these principles by children aged 8 and 9 from the Philippines and New Zealand. These countries were selected because they have quite different curricula, societal influences and economies. Ninety-one children were interviewed individually on a common set of unusual tasks that were designed to tap underlying principles. Results showed many similarities and some differences between countries. Most tasks requiring visualisation and informal units were done more accurately by New Zealand children. Some tasks involving the use of a conventional ruler were done more accurately by Filipino children. These differences appear to be related to differences in curricula and possibly to differences in societal use of measurement. We suggest that these results, like those of other writers cited, demonstrate the need for extensive work on the underlying concepts in measurement through work on informal measurement and a careful transition between informal and formal measurement. (Contains 7 tables and 5 figure.)
Mathematics Education Research Group of Australasia. MERGA-GPO Box 2747, Adelaide, South Australia 5001, Australia. Web Site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: Elementary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: New Zealand; Philippines