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MIAA 320

C. Hambleton
Leader Discussion

Discussion Leader Assignment

Teachers College of San Joaquin
Christina Hambleton
September 3rd, 2014

MIAA 320
C. Hambleton
Leader Discussion
The following project examines an article that addresses mathematical discourse
in diverse backgrounds. The article was taken from Mathematics Teaching in the Middle
School and is titled, Promoting Mathematical Discourse; Learning from Classroom
Examples (Manouchehri, A., Enderson, M., 1999). The article focuses on allowing
students the necessity for students to form a personal relationship (Manouchehri and
Enderson, 216) with mathematics in order to promote and ensure mathematical discourse
is taking place. Several aspects which I deem relevant to my teaching and classroom have
been outlined. In addition, I will explain how knowledge obtained from this article will
be applied to my classroom.

MIAA 320
C. Hambleton
Leader Discussion

Promoting Mathematical Discourse; Learning from Classroom Examples

Azita Manouchehri & Mary Enderson (Mathematics Teaching in the Middle School, 1999)

Recommends Mathematics Instruction

Should promote students discourse
o Creating situations where the thinking of each student is challenged
Ask students to clarify & justify their ideas
Authors expanded on ideas by DAmbrosio (1995) who claimed the need to build
Personal Relationship with mathematics
Necessary to promote & sustain mathematical discourse
o Student engagement in authentic mathematical inquiry
o Act like mathematicians
Explore ideas & concepts
Explore various meanings of concepts
Explore connections amongst ideas
Engage in conversations with other students
Authors believe that along with DAmbrosios proposal
teachers need to SEE examples of how to genuinely facilitate mathematical discourse by
Students engaged in mathematical dialogue
Students engaged in self-inquiry
Lesson Delivery to diverse 7th grade math students
Various mathematical levels, special needs, & various socioeconomic backgrounds
Instructs students to partner up, distributes a number pyramid, and says, Here is a
situation; explore it.

15 minutes
each group shares their observations
o Elements in pyramid are odd #
o 2-unit difference occurs between adjacent pairs in each row

MIAA 320
C. Hambleton
Leader Discussion
o Differences of the adjacent elements along the sides of the triangle are multiples f
o # of elements in each row is the same as the row number
o All the #s that fall on the altitude line of the triangle are perfect squares
o All the #s that fall on the altitude line of the triangle increase by multiples of 8

After each observation

o Observations are discussed by whole class
o Asked if they agree/disagree with observations
Teacher continually positively reinforces each observation & supports and asks questions
to provoke additional thoughts:
o Why dont you extend the sequence & see if theres a pattern
o Can you show us how you reached that observation?
o How are these patterns related?

My High Impression
o The level of engagement in a task which at 1st appeared to be so trivial
Students eagerly created relationships, discovered patterns, made
conjectures, formed arguments to support their conjectures, and shared
and debated the arguments with other students
o The high level of mathematical vocabulary these students demonstrated
Students knew what prime #s , consecutive patterns, and altitude of
triangles were in a setting that was not directly asking them for such
Procedures with connections
o Students readily used others ideas to build and expand on their own
o The high level of reasoning & problem solving skills students demonstrated
Noticing the #s down the triangles altitude for perfect squares, and
increased by multiples of 8
Expanding the sequence on their own to discover new patterns

Application of Knowledge
o 1st create a warm and inviting social environment where peers feel comfortable
amongst each other and respect each other enough to share ideas which may or
may not be correct
Almost there I had students last year. Very familiar with their
personalities and behaviors. We have been working on these tactics since
the beginning of school
Will create a list of partners pairing up as best I can students
which will increase and nurture individual participation
o Revise doing the math
Not just finding the wrong or right answer
Alter students perceptions so that they are comfortable with asking, why,
how, and what?

MIAA 320
C. Hambleton
Leader Discussion
o I have been worried about how to begin such discourse in my class. I have been
thinking about complex projects, intricate discussions, and elaborate
presentations. Yet, as demonstrated in this article, something as simple as a basic
numerical triangle can transform a mind-numbing memorization based learning
period into one rich with unlimited discourse and invaluable cognitive