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ERIC Number: EJ991857
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2012
Pages: 19
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 32
ISSN: ISSN-1442-3901
A Lesson Based on the Use of Contexts: An Example of Effective Practice in Secondary School Mathematics
Harvey, Roger; Averill, Robin
Mathematics Teacher Education and Development, v14 n1 p41-59 2012
The importance of using real-life contexts in teaching mathematics is emphasised in many policy and curriculum statements. The literature indicates using contexts to teach mathematics can be difficult and few detailed exemplars exist. This article describes the use of real-life contexts in one New Zealand Year 11 algebra lesson. Data included a video recording of one lesson and the teacher's reflections on the lesson. Analysis of the lesson revealed the importance for its success of the ways in which the learning tasks and their contexts were introduced, ongoing referral to the contexts, consolidation of prior mathematics learning, and teacher questioning. The lesson described illustrates how meaningful links to real-life contexts can be developed to promote mathematical understanding, how a balance between focusing on the mathematics and the context can be achieved, and that these require careful planning. The lesson example and its analysis indicate that awareness of the complexity of implementing context-based mathematics learning is important for those who promote or want to implement context-based mathematics teaching, including policy makers, teacher educators, and teachers. (Contains 1 table and 6 figures.)
Mathematics Education Research Group of Australasia. GPO Box 2747, Adelaide SA 5001, Australia. Tel: +61-8-8363-0288; Fax: +61-8-8362-9288; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Grade 11; Secondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: New Zealand