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Generalising mathematical structure in Years 3-4: A case study of equivalence of expression

Cooper, Thomas J. & Warren, Elizabeth (2008) Generalising mathematical structure in Years 3-4: A case study of equivalence of expression. In Figueras, O., Cortina, J. L., Alatorre, S., Rojano, T., & Sepulveda, A. (Eds.) International Group for the Psychology of Mathematics Education: Proceedings of the Joint Meeting of PME 32 and PME-NA XXX, July 17-21, 2008, Morelia, Mexico.

Abstract

This paper reports on a section of the Early Algebraic Thinking Project (EATP) which focused on Australian Years 3-4 (age 7-9) students' abilities to generalise mathematical structure in relation to equivalence of expressions (with and without unknowns). It focuses on learning activities involving a sequence of representations to show that change resulting from addition-subtraction requires the performance of the opposite change (subtraction-addition respectively) by the same amount in order to return to the original state (e.g., x=x+p-p or x-q+q in algebraic symbols). It shows that children of this age can generalise this mathematical structure and that effective teaching for generalisation uses creative representation-worksheet partnerships.

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ID Code: 15697
Item Type: Conference Paper
Additional URLs:
Keywords: mathematical structure, equivalence of expression, early algebra, generalisation
ISBN: 9786079501310
ISSN: 0771-100X
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > EDUCATION (130000) > CURRICULUM AND PEDAGOGY (130200) > Mathematics and Numeracy Curriculum and Pedagogy (130208)
Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > EDUCATION (130000) > SPECIALIST STUDIES IN EDUCATION (130300) > Learning Sciences (130309)
Divisions: Current > Research Centres > Office of Education Research
Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Faculty of Education
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2008 Thomas J. Cooper and Elizabeth Warren
Deposited On: 24 Nov 2008
Last Modified: 29 Feb 2012 23:44

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