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Discovering diverse students’ funds of knowledge related to finance: Pāsifika students in New Zealand


This article reports the findings of a study using tasks where a family orders and considers sharing the cost of a Fish n Chips meal. Purchasing take-away food is an example of an everyday situation where literacy and numeracy must be applied to make sense of tabulated price information. Originally developed for use in Australia, the tasks were modified so that they might be challenging yet accessible to 10–12-year-old Pāsifika students in New Zealand. Working collaboratively with two teachers in two different schools, we aimed to explore the ways and means by which Pāsifika students drew on social and cultural norms and practices as they applied mathematics to make financial decisions and interacted with each other in justifying solutions that offered what they deemed to be value for money and a fair approach to paying the bill. The students’ and teachers’ reactions to the lessons revealed that as students worked to reconcile social, cultural and mathematical funds of knowledge, their teachers gained meaningful insights into the values about money being learned within families and communities.

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Correspondence to Jodie Hunter.

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Hunter, J., Sawatzki, C. Discovering diverse students’ funds of knowledge related to finance: Pāsifika students in New Zealand. Math Ed Res J 31, 419–439 (2019).

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  • Financial literacy
  • Middle years
  • Pasifika
  • Funds of knowledge