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Kathleen Lynch and Jon R. Star

Although policy documents promote teaching students multiple strategies for solving mathematics problems, some practitioners and researchers argue that struggling learners will be confused and overwhelmed by this instructional practice. In the current exploratory study, we explore how 6 struggling students viewed the practice of learning multiple strategies at the end of a yearlong algebra course that emphasized this practice. Interviews with these students indicated that they preferred instruction with multiple strategies to their regular instruction, often noting that it reduced their confusion. We discuss directions for future research that emerged from this work.

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William P. Blintz and Sara Delano Moore

AT ONE TIME, NOT SO LONG AGO, we thought that we were a very odd pair. Although we were faculty members in middle school education at the same university, one of us was a reading educator and the other, a mathematics educator. What could we possibly have had in common? What could we talk about? And how could we talk about it to each other? We did not have the same professional backgrounds, and we surely did not speak the same language! Many of our colleagues just shook their heads and said that our collaboration would never work.