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Nirode, Wayne – Mathematics Teacher, 2018

Twenty years ago when the author was student teaching, he quickly learned what geometry teachers and researchers (e.g., Senk 1985) have long known: High school geometry students struggle with proof. Throughout his career, he has tried to create instructional materials to make proof more accessible to his students. From field-testing materials with…

Descriptors: Secondary School Mathematics, High Schools, Geometry, Mathematics Instruction

Bixby, Matt M. – Mathematics Teacher, 2018

Almost twenty years ago, the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics (NCTM) published "Principles and Standards for School Mathematics" (2000), which recommended that teachers should incorporate more writing into their math lessons, claiming that writing helps students "consolidate their thinking" (p. 402) by causing them…

Descriptors: Mathematics Instruction, Writing Assignments, Teaching Methods, Content Area Writing

Adams, Caleb L. – Mathematics Teacher, 2018

Polynomials with rational roots and extrema may be difficult to create. Although techniques for solving cubic polynomials exist, students struggle with solutions that are in a complicated format. Presented in this article is a way instructors may wish to introduce the topics of roots and critical numbers of polynomial functions in calculus. In a…

Descriptors: Mathematics Instruction, Calculus, Mathematical Concepts, Concept Formation

Richardson, Janessa; Bachman, Rachel M. – Mathematics Teacher, 2017

This article describes a preservice teacher's imaginative exploration of completing the square through a process of reasoning and sense making. She recounts historical perspectives and her own discoveries in the process of completing the square. Through this process of sense making, she engaged with the content standard of completing the square to…

Descriptors: Preservice Teachers, Mathematics Instruction, Mathematical Concepts, Mathematical Logic

Anhalt, Cynthia Oropesa; Cortez, Ricardo – Mathematics Teacher, 2015

Mathematical modeling, in which students use mathematics to explain or interpret physical, social, or scientific phenomena, is an essential component of the high school curriculum. The Common Core State Standards for Mathematics (CCSSM) classify modeling as a K-12 standard for mathematical practice and as a conceptual category for high school…

Descriptors: Mathematics Instruction, Mathematical Models, Teaching Methods, Mathematical Concepts

Wendt, Ted; Murphy, Kevin – Mathematics Teacher, 2015

According to a 2012 study from the Program for International Student Assessment, twenty-nine out of sixty-five participating nations and other jurisdictions outperformed the United States in mathematics by a statistically significant margin (up from twenty-three in 2009) (Heitin 2013). To improve students' mathematical understanding, the authors…

Descriptors: Mathematics Instruction, Mathematics Achievement, Common Core State Standards, Mathematics Skills

Viro, Julia – Mathematics Teacher, 2014

Constructing viable arguments and reasoning abstractly is an essential part of the Common Core State Standards for Mathematics (CCSSI 2010). This article discusses the scenarios in which a mathematical task is impossible to accomplish, as well as how to approach impossible scenarios in the classroom. The concept of proof is introduced as the…

Descriptors: Mathematics Instruction, Mathematical Concepts, Validity, Mathematical Logic

Zelkowski, Jeremy S. – Mathematics Teacher, 2013

Principles and Standards for School Mathematics (NCTM 2000) states, "Technology is essential in teaching and learning mathematics; it influences the mathematics that is taught and enhances students' learning." The focus on reasoning and sense making with technology in the lesson presented in this article will enable students to do more…

Descriptors: Mathematics Instruction, Educational Technology, Mathematical Concepts, Teaching Methods

Gonzalez, Gloriana; DeJarnette, Anna F. – Mathematics Teacher, 2013

What does problem-based instruction do for students and teachers? The open-ended geometry problem presented in this article, along with examples of students' work on the problem, illustrates how problem-based instruction can help students develop their mathematical proficiency. Recent studies have shown that students who experience problem-based…

Descriptors: Mathematical Logic, Mathematics Instruction, Geometry, Geometric Concepts

Fernandez, Eileen; Geist, Kristi A. – Mathematics Teacher, 2011

Logistic growth displays an interesting pattern: It starts fast, exhibiting the rapid growth characteristic of exponential models. As time passes, it slows in response to constraints such as limited resources or reallocation of energy. The growth continues to slow until it reaches a limit, called capacity. When the growth describes a population,…

Descriptors: Textbooks, Calculus, Mathematics Instruction, Mathematical Concepts

Ellis, Mark W.; Bryson, Janet L. – Mathematics Teacher, 2011

The absolute value learning objective in high school mathematics requires students to solve far more complex absolute value equations and inequalities. When absolute value problems become more complex, students often do not have sufficient conceptual understanding to make any sense of what is happening mathematically. The authors suggest that the…

Descriptors: Mathematics Instruction, Equations (Mathematics), Teaching Methods, Secondary School Mathematics

Devlin, Keith – Mathematics Teacher, 2010

The mathematics that students see in their textbooks is highly polished. The steps required to solve a problem are all clearly laid out. Thus, students are denied what could be a valuable learning experience. Often when students meet a problem that differs only slightly from the ones in the book, they are unable to proceed and afraid to "play…

Descriptors: Textbooks, Error Patterns, Probability, Learning Experience

Johnson, Gwendolyn J.; Thompson, Denisse R.; Senk, Sharon L. – Mathematics Teacher, 2010

Recognizing that textbooks play a prominent role in fostering students' understanding of reasoning and proof, the authors conducted a study to examine the extent to which textbooks used in U.S. high schools provide opportunities for students to encounter proof-related reasoning and how the nature of proof-related reasoning in textbooks varies by…

Descriptors: High Schools, Textbooks, Mathematical Logic, Validity

Bannon, Thomas J. – Mathematics Teacher, 2009

In this article, the classic problem of finding three ways to determine the probability that the pieces of a stick randomly broken in two places will form a triangle is analyzed anew. To be useful in the classroom, an application must be incorporated into an often-crowded curriculum. What is nice about this triangle problem is that it fits in…

Descriptors: Geometric Concepts, Probability, Geometry, Mathematics Instruction

Anderson, Gail M. – Mathematics Teacher, 2008

Students often struggle with the connection between algebraic and graphical representations of functions. This overview of the history of the Cartesian coordinate system helps the classroom teacher consider new ways to aid students in making the "Cartesian connection." (Contains 7 figures.)

Descriptors: Mathematics Instruction, Teaching Methods, Algebra, Graphs

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