Journal of Mathematics Teacher Education

, Volume 3, Issue 2, pp 155–181 | Cite as

Seeing More Than Right and Wrong Answers: Prospective Teachers' Interpretations of Students' Mathematical Work

  • Sandra Crespo


Listening to students' mathematical thinking is one of the trademarks of reform-minded visions of mathematics teaching. The questions of when, where, how, and what might help prospective teachers learn to do so,however, remain open. This study examines how a mathematics letter exchange with Grade 4 students provided an occasion for prospective teachers to learn about students' mathematical thinking and to examine their interpretive practices. Analysis of the interactions between students and prospective teachers, and of the reflective writing of the latter,revealed changes in the patterns of their interpretations. I characterized these as changes in the focus of interpretation, from correctness to meaning, and in the interpretive approach, from quick and conclusive to thoughtful and tentative. I also discuss factors associated with these interpretive turns.


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Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 2000

Authors and Affiliations

  • Sandra Crespo
    • 1
  1. 1.Michigan State UniversityEast Lansing

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