Mathematics Teachers Are Effective When They Plan Learning Experiences

842 WordsNov 18, 20154 Pages
According to Anthony and Walshaw (2009), mathematics teachers are effective when they plan learning experiences that build on students’ existing skills and experiences. In order to build in this way, teachers must be knowledgeable of these skills and experiences. From this standpoint, it is imperative that teachers become aware of the students’ proficiencies and experiences in mathematics. Possible means for obtaining this information could be from the students’ former teachers, previously taken standardized tests, and prior academic records (e.g. report cards and transcripts). Recognizing that these items may not be all inclusive, especially if the students have experienced mathematics outside of a formal school setting, teachers should also gather information directly from the students. The teachers could administer assessments to gain some indication of the students’ mathematical proficiencies and could interview the students in regards to their mathematics experiences. Interviewing or talking to the students may not only provide information regarding mathematical skills and experiences, but these conversations may also give insight to how the students view themselves as mathematics students. These views, or the students’ mathematical identities, will play an important role in how the students choose to engage in classroom activities (Bishop, 2012). It is important for teachers to recognize that what students know is often connected to who they are and possibly who
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