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Teaching Mathematics for Social Justice in Multicultural, Multilingual Elementary Classrooms

Abstract

This article describes a set of collaborative inquiry projects that emerged from a research study group involving teachers, university researchers (the authors), and school district staff as they worked to teach mathematics equitably in an urban elementary school. The project is analyzed using Marilyn Cochran-Smith’s (2004) six principles of pedagogy for teaching for social justice. In the study group, teachers were involved in designing research questions to honor their students’ cultural and community knowledge and to develop mathematics teaching with a social justice focus. We offer three examples of teaching mathematics for social justice in diverse classrooms and consider the broader implications of inquiry projects such as these.

Résumé

Cet article présente une série de projets d’enquête réalisés en collaboration par un groupe de recherche comprenant des enseignants, des chercheurs universitaires (les auteurs) et des membres du personnel d’un district scolaire, désireux d’enseigner les mathématiques de façon équitable dans une école élémentaire en milieu urbain. Le projet est analysé au moyen des six principes pédagogiques de Marilyn Cochran-Smith pour l’enseignement de la justice sociale. Au sein du groupe d’étude, les enseignants ont participé à la création de questions de recherche misant sur les connaissances culturelles et locales de leurs étudiants, et au développement d’un enseignement des mathématiques centré sur la justice sociale. Nous proposons trois exemples d’enseignement des mathématiques pour la justice sociale dans différentes classes, et nous nous penchons sur les implications plus générales de projets de recherche de ce type.

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Correspondence to Indigo Esmonde.

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Esmonde, I., Caswell, B. Teaching Mathematics for Social Justice in Multicultural, Multilingual Elementary Classrooms. Can J Sci Math Techn 10, 244–254 (2010). https://doi.org/10.1080/14926156.2010.504485

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