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The creation of mathematics in school textbooks: Palestine and England as example

Alshwaikh, Jehad and Morgan, Candia (2014) The creation of mathematics in school textbooks: Palestine and England as example. In: UNSPECIFIED. (In Press)

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Abstract

The language of mathematics textbooks, including symbols and diagrams, constructs particular views of the nature of mathematics and expectations about students’ participation in mathematical activity. In a collaborative project between the Institute of Education and Birzeit University, we developed an analytic framework for examining the nature of mathematics and mathematical activity in textbooks. This framework, based on those developed by Tang, Morgan, & Sfard (2012) for the verbal mode and by Alshwaikh (2011) for the visual, enabled us to take account of the multimodal nature of mathematical texts. We applied the framework to analyse a sample of topics from the textbooks used in Palestinian schools and to a smaller sample of topics from textbooks commonly used in England. The research showed that, for younger students in both countries, mathematics is construed as involving practical activities. For students in Palestine, however, abstract mathematical reasoning is also prioritised from a much earlier age. This raises questions about how textbooks in the two countries may support students to move towards abstract mathematical reasoning.

Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (Paper)
Controlled Keywords: Multimodal social semiotics, discourse analysis, nature of mathematics, learner agency, Curriculum materials, Mathematics or maths
Depositing User: Atira Pure
Date Deposited: 29 Aug 2014 10:57
Last Modified: 29 Jan 2015 10:39
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