Educational Studies in Mathematics

, Volume 70, Issue 2, pp 127–141

Gestures and conceptual integration in mathematical talk


DOI: 10.1007/s10649-008-9124-6

Cite this article as:
Edwards, L.D. Educ Stud Math (2009) 70: 127. doi:10.1007/s10649-008-9124-6


Spontaneous gesture produced in conjunction with speech is considered as both a source of data about mathematical thinking, and as an integral modality in communication and cognition. The analysis draws on a corpus of more than 200 gestures collected during 3 h of interviews with prospective elementary school teachers on the topic of fractions. The analysis examines how gestures express meaning, utilizing the framework of cognitive linguistics to argue that gestures are both composed of, and provide inputs to, conceptual blends for mathematical ideas, and a standard typology drawn from gesture studies is extended to address the function of gestures within mathematics more appropriately.


Conceptual blendsDiscourseEmbodimentFractionsGestureMetaphor

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© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2008

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Saint Mary’s College of CaliforniaMoragaUSA