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ERIC Number: EJ896826
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2010-Aug
Pages: 20
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 27
ISSN: ISSN-0731-9258
Technology in Spherical Geometry Investigations: Reflections on Spontaneous Use and Motivation
Sinclair, Margaret
Journal of Computers in Mathematics and Science Teaching, v29 n3 p269-288 Aug 2010
Students in a graduate geometry class used items such as paper, ribbon, plastic spheres, cardboard tubes, and markers to carry out investigations in spherical geometry. The hands-on activities helped students develop a new appreciation of geometry as a study of shape and space; however, the difficulty of subduing wayward elastics and drawing lines on spheres to create accurate models for conjecturing, led some students to try either Cinderella (Richter-Gebert & Kortenkamp, 1999), or Spherical Sketchpad (Austin & Dickinson, 2002) as supplementary exploratory tools. The students developed the required technical expertise on their own, and devised various methods to mark up printouts for assignments. They used technology in a natural way--throughout the course and in conjunction with other methods. Reflecting on student comments and this spontaneous use of technology by individuals, I theorized that the software supported visualizing, and making connections to prior understandings, which in turn led to an increased sense of confidence. This research leads us to question how we introduce and use software, and how we might foster spontaneity in regard to technology use. (Contains 7 figures.)
Association for the Advancement of Computing in Education. P.O. Box 1545, Chesapeake, VA 23327-1545. Tel: 757-366-5606; Fax: 703-997-8760; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: Higher Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A