Mathematics Education Research Journal

, Volume 27, Issue 3, pp 283–309 | Cite as

Looking at practice: revealing the knowledge demands of teaching data handling in the primary classroom

  • Aisling LeavyEmail author
Original Article


In the evolving field of mathematics education, there is the need to maintain the relationship between what is presented in college level preparation courses and the skills required to teach mathematics in classrooms. This research examines the knowledge demands placed on 73 pre-service primary teachers as they use lesson study to plan and teach data handling in primary classrooms. Pre-service teachers are observed as they plan, teach and re-teach data lessons in classrooms. Problems of practice are identified and categorized using the Ball, Thames and Phelps (2008) subdomains of common content knowledge (CCK), specialized content knowledge (SCK), knowledge of content and students (KCS) and knowledge of content and teaching (KCT). The results provide insights into the specific knowledge demands placed on early career teachers when teaching data and statistics and identifies foci area that can be addressed in teacher preparation programs. The results illustrate that development of understandings in one knowledge subdomain can motivate and impact learning in another subdomain. These interrelationships were found to exist both within and between the domains of content and pedagogical content knowledge.


Teaching data and statistics Elementary mathematics Teacher education Teacher knowledge Lesson study Pedagogical knowledge 


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Copyright information

© Mathematics Education Research Group of Australasia, Inc. 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Language, Literacy and Mathematics EducationMary Immaculate College—University of LimerickLimerickIreland

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