Early Algebraization pp 277-301 | Cite as

# An Approach to Geometric and Numeric Patterning that Fosters Second Grade Students’ Reasoning and Generalizing about Functions and Co-variation

## Abstract

In this chapter, we present illustrations of second grade students’ reasoning about patterns and two-part function rules in the context of an early algebra research project that we have been conducting in elementary schools in Toronto and New York City. While the study of patterns is mandated in many countries as part of initiatives to include algebra from K-12, there is a plethora of evidence that suggests that the route from patterns to algebra can be challenging even for older students. Our teaching intervention was designed to foster in students an understanding of linear function and co-variation through the integration of geometric and numeric representations of growing patterns. Six classrooms from diverse urban settings participated in a 10–14-week intervention. Results revealed that the intervention supported students to engage in functional reasoning and to identify and express two-part rules for geometric and numeric patterns. Furthermore, the students, who had not had formal instruction in multiplication prior to the intervention, invented mathematically sound strategies to deconstruct multiplication operations to solve problems. Finally, the results revealed that the experimental curriculum supported students to transfer their understanding of two-part function rules to novel settings.

## Keywords

Word Problem Function Rule Geometric Pattern Position Number Algebraic Thinking## Preview

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