Conceptualizing the Teaching Practice of Building on Student Mathematical Thinking

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Abstract/Description:

An important aspect of effective teaching is taking advantage of in-the-moment expressions of student thinking that, by becoming the object of class discussion, can help students better understand important mathematical ideas.  We call these high-potential instances of student thinking MOSTs and the productive use of them building.  The purpose of this paper is to conceptualize the teaching practice of building on MOSTs as a first step toward developing a common language for and an understanding of productive use of high-potential instances of student thinking.  We situate this work with the existing literature, introduce core principles that underlie our conception of building, and present a prototype of the teaching practice of building on MOSTs that include four sub-practices.  We conclude by discussing the need for future research and our research agenda for studying the building prototype.


Location: PME-NA 2016 Conference, Tucson, Arizona
Presenter:

Laura R. Van Zoest, Western Michigan University; Blake E. Peterson and Keith R. Leatham, Brigham Young University; and Shari L. Stockero, Michigan Technological University