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Exploring a framework for classroom culture: A case study of the interaction patterns in mathematical whole-class discussions
Mälardalen University, School of Education, Culture and Communication, Educational Sciences and Mathematics. (M-TERM)ORCID iD: 0000-0002-6518-1418
2015 (English)In: Proceedings of CERME9: 9th Congress of European Research in Mathematics Education, Prague, February, 4-8, 2015 / [ed] K. Krainer & N. Vondrová, Prague: PedF UK v Praze and ERME , 2015Conference paper, Published paper (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

Research is needed on frameworks that support teachers in the important and challenging work of orchestrating productive problem-solving whole-class discussions. The aim of this paper is to explore a framework for classroom culture with the overarching goal of supporting teachers in conducting class discussions focused on argumentation as well as connection making. Analyses of video-recorded whole-class discussions result in the articulation of some difficulties in clearly distinguishing between certain interaction patterns within different classroom cultures. The overall findings, however, suggest that the framework can be useful for characterizing interaction in terms of an inquiry/argument classroom culture.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Prague: PedF UK v Praze and ERME , 2015.
Keyword [en]
interaction pattern, whole-class discussion, classroom culture, inquiry/argument, instructional practice
National Category
Didactics
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:mdh:diva-29402OAI: oai:DiVA.org:mdh-29402DiVA: diva2:865164
Conference
CERME9
Available from: 2015-10-27 Created: 2015-10-27 Last updated: 2015-10-28Bibliographically approved
In thesis
1. Orchestrating mathematical whole-class discussions in the problem-solving classroom: Theorizing challenges and support for teachers
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Orchestrating mathematical whole-class discussions in the problem-solving classroom: Theorizing challenges and support for teachers
2015 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Promising teaching approaches for developing students’ mathematical competencies include the approach of teaching mathematics through problem solving. Orchestrating a whole-class discussion of students’ ideas is an important aspect of teaching through problem solving. There is a wide consensus within the field that it is very challenging for the teacher to conduct class discussions that both build on student ideas and highlight key mathematical ideas and relationships. Further, fostering argumentation in the class, which is important for students’ participation, is also a grand challenge. Teachers need support in these challenges. The aim of the thesis is to characterize challenges and support for mathematics teachers in orchestrating productive problem-solving whole-class discussions that focus on both mathematical connection-making and argumentation. In particular, it is investigated how Stein et al.’s (2008) model with five practices – anticipating, monitoring, selecting, sequencing and connecting student solutions – can support teachers to handle the challenges and what constitutes the limitations of the research-based and widely-used model. This thesis builds on six papers. The papers are based on three intervention studies and on one study of a mathematics teacher proficient in conducting problem-solving class discussions. Video recordings of observed whole-class discussions as well as audio-recorded teacher interviews and teacher meetings constitute the data that are analyzed. It is concluded in the thesis that the five practices model supports teachers’ preparation before the lesson by the practice of anticipating. However, making detailed anticipations, which is shown to be both challenging and important to foster argumentation in the class, is not explicitly supported by the model. Further, the practice of monitoring supports teachers in using the variety of student solutions to highlight key mathematical ideas and connections. Challenging aspects not supported by the monitoring practice are, however, how to interact with students during their exploration to actually get a variety of different solutions as a basis for argumentation. The challenge of selecting and sequencing student solutions is supported for the purpose of connection-making, but not for the purpose of argumentation. Making mathematical connections can be facilitated by the last practice of connecting, with the help of the previous practices. However, support for distinguishing between different kinds of connections is lacking, as well as support for creating an argumentative classroom culture. Since it is a great challenge to promote argumentation among students, support is needed for this throughout the model. Lastly, despite the importance and challenge of launching a problem productively, it is not supported by the model. Based on the conclusions on challenges and support, developments to the five practices model are suggested. The thesis contributes to research on the theoretical development of tools that support teachers in the challenges of orchestrating productive problem-solving whole-class discussions.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Västerås: Mälardalen University, 2015
Series
Mälardalen University Press Dissertations, ISSN 1651-4238 ; 193
Keyword
whole-class discussion, problem solving, five practices model, mathematical connection, argumentation, inquiry/argument, supportive tool
National Category
Didactics
Research subject
Didactics
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:mdh:diva-29409 (URN)978-91-7485-242-4 (ISBN)
Public defence
2015-12-11, Kappa, Mälardalens högskola, Västerås, 13:00 (English)
Opponent
Supervisors
Available from: 2015-10-28 Created: 2015-10-28 Last updated: 2015-11-24Bibliographically approved

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