Educational Studies in Mathematics

, Volume 53, Issue 2, pp 91–112 | Cite as

Some reflections on mathematics classroom notebooks and their relationship to the public and private nature of student practices

  • Michael N. Fried
  • Miriam Amit


This article considers students' classroom notebooks, their character and their role in learning. The results presented were found within the frame work of a broader international project, the Learners Perspective Study, whose goal is to identify classroom practice from the students' point of view. Two 8thgrade classrooms were studied. In each,every lesson over the course of three weeks was videotaped. After each lesson, two students were interviewed and their notebooks entrees for that lesson were photocopied; once a week, the teacher was interviewed as well. From the analysis of the data it became apparent that the notebook in the classroom is a publicobject; it is ever open for inspection and contains only finished work. That it is not a private object in which the student may freely record preliminary ideas, musings, and reflections may affect student learning negatively. The categorization of public and private as a categorization of learning activities is discussed. The relationship between the findings on notebooks and research on writing and classroom journals is discussed; in particular, a connection is made between public and private domains and transactional and expressive writing,respectively.

journals mathematics classroom notebooks public and private domains transactional and expressive writing 


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Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 2003

Authors and Affiliations

  • Michael N. Fried
    • 1
  • Miriam Amit
    • 1
  1. 1.Center for Science and Technology Education, the Institutes for Applied ResearchBen-Gurion University of the NegevBeer-ShevaIsrael

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