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DISCUSS THE NEED FOR TEACHERS TO DEVELOP CHILDREN(TM)S MATHEMATICAL THINKING

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Introduction

WITH REFERENCE TO YOUR SCHOOL RESEARCH AND RELEVANT LITERATURE DISCUSS THE NEED FOR TEACHERS TO DEVELOP CHILDREN'S MATHEMATICAL THINKING. EXEMPLIFY YOUR DISCUSSION THROUGH SPECIFIC ANALYSIS OF CHILDREN'S USE AND APPLICATION OF MATHEMATICS A small scale research based on a set of children was undertaken by me while I was in placement. The research was based on children's mathematical thinking and how teacher's help develop children's mathematical thinking. I will be using relevant quotes from appropriate theorists and literature to support my research. My small scale research is based on a group of 6 six children from keys stage one, year two, class of 28 children from a large urban primary school. The school is a newly built school based in East London, Leyton, opposite another primary school. It has a mixture of children from different races, cultures and religion. The research consists of photocopies of children's work, lessons plans, and evaluations of lessons, weekly lesson plans and transcripts. I chose to do my research on the higher ability children from the class as a lot of the children from the class speak English as a second language and find it difficult to explain themselves. Children from the lower ability find it difficult to understand the work and therefore are given much easier work compared to the higher ability. The lower ability children also need a lot of help and support when they are doing their work. ...read more.

Middle

But once I got the children to use pennies in making �10 a lot of the children were getting confused. Children worked as a group discussing and showing their ideas and strategies using coins. In this activity children were able to demonstrate what they already knew about money and were challenging them to develop their understanding further. When I asked Usayd to put pennies into making �10 he easily took away one �1 coin and replaced it with 2 50 pence pieces. Hoyles (1985) also agrees how speaking also plays a role in developing children's mathematical thinking. She believes there are two functions of talk. The first function of talk is 'communicative language', which is when the child explains and justifies their strategy. The other is 'cognitive talk', this is when the child is given time to reflect back at their work. Piaget's (1970) stage theory on children's psychological development reflects on the cycle of learning. In the preoperational stage children are able to use symbols to represent their ideas. At this stage children are also egocentric which explains why children at that stage find it difficult to understand number, volume and length. Culture plays a role in helping develop children's mathematical thinking. Bruner (1977) believed that cognitive development occurred from culture surrounding the child and the mental actions which occurred to process the information. ...read more.

Conclusion

Yackel and Cobb (1996) believe that sociomathematical norms are essential within the discussions taken in the classroom as they create mathematical ideas. As the teacher I devised lessons for children that I knew would help develop children's ideas and knowledge. Through experience I had noticed how children work better and are more focused when the maths session is in the morning. I noticed in the afternoon, children can be very hyper and unsettled. This makes it difficult to control and manage the class and also takes longer for the children to complete their work. If you compare some of the evaluations (see appendix 3) you will notice how the sessions which took place in the afternoon, the children were a little hyper and I did lose control over them couple of times. However the sessions which took place in the mornings worked well. Going back to the essay title I have demonstrated the needs of developing children's mathematical thinking. As there are many sections of mathematics it becomes necessary as a teacher to develop children's mathematical thinking through all sections in all the various ways available. Having taught children through all the various ways I feel I have managed to teach to the utmost extent and children have learnt and developed to their maximum of understanding. It is important that teachers take into account of differentiation and children's abilities when planning and teaching so children do learn and can develop their mathematical thinking. ...read more.

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