Generalising the pattern rule for visual growth patterns: Actions that support 8 year olds’ thinking
 Elizabeth Warren,
 Tom Cooper
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A common approach used for introducing algebra to young adolescents is an exploration of visual growth patterns and expressing these patterns as functions and algebraic expressions. Past research has indicated that many adolescents experience difficulties with this approach. This paper explores teaching actions and thinking that begins to bridge many of these difficulties at an early age. A teaching experiment was conducted with two classes of students with an average age of eight years and six months. From the results it appears that young students are capable not only of thinking about the relationship between two data sets, but also of expressing this relationship in a very abstract form.
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 Title
 Generalising the pattern rule for visual growth patterns: Actions that support 8 year olds’ thinking
 Journal

Educational Studies in Mathematics
Volume 67, Issue 2 , pp 171185
 Cover Date
 20080201
 DOI
 10.1007/s1064900790922
 Print ISSN
 00131954
 Online ISSN
 15730816
 Publisher
 Springer Netherlands
 Additional Links
 Topics
 Keywords

 Algebraic thinking
 Elementary students
 Visual growth patterns
 Semiotics
 Student thinking
 Teaching actions
 Authors

 Elizabeth Warren ^{(1)}
 Tom Cooper ^{(2)}
 Author Affiliations

 1. McAuley Campus, Australian Catholic University, 1100 Nudgee Road, Banyo, Queensland, 4014, Australia
 2. Queensland University of Technology, Victoria Park Road, Kelvin Grove, Queensland, 4059, Australia