Mathematics and manipulatives: Views from the secondary schools

Year: 1996

Author: Howard, Peter, Perry, Bob, Conroy, John

Type of paper: Abstract refereed

Abstract:
This paper continues the authors' research plan, introduced in 1994 and reported on in the 1995 AARE Conference, to investigate the use of manipulatives in mathematics learning and teaching in primary and secondary schools. While manipulative use is reasonably well accepted in primary schools, there is a lower level of acceptance in secondary schools. The relationship between the use of manipulatives and teacher beliefs about mathematics, mathematics learning and mathematics teaching in secondary schools is reported here.

All mathematics teachers in government and non-government secondary schools in the south western suburbs of Sydney were surveyed to ascertain demographic information, the use of manipulatives in mathematics learning and teaching and the teachers ' beliefs about mathematics, mathematics learning and mathematics teaching. Through statistical analysis of this data, relationships between espoused and enacted beliefs of these teachers are investigated. In addition, comparison with data derived from primary school teachers in the same region of Sydney is addressed.

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