How Teachers Introduce Algebra and How It Might Affect Students’ Beliefs About What It Means to “Do” Mathematics



The chapter reports a comparative case-study of teachers’ beliefs about what it means to know algebra. Thus, how mathematics teaching is organized is not an immediate reflection of the subject as such, but also determined by ideas of what it means to learn and to do mathematics. Teacher interviews document significant differences in conceptions of algebra and ways into algebra, which, in turn, imply differences in instructional approaches and opportunities for learning. The classroom observations show that students adopt different roles and adapt to different cultural routines, which have implications for their learning of algebra.


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© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of PsychologyUniversity of California, Los AngelesLos AngelesUSA
  2. 2.Department of PsychologyUniversity of California, San DiegoLa JollaUSA

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