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Entry Points chapter 7 Mathematics

Outline
I. Theoretical Perspectives
II. Rationale, aims, and objectives for teaching mathematics
- Aims and objectives for teaching mathematics
- Rationale and objectives for the study of mathematics
- Charis Mathematics Project aims
III. Curriculum development
- The nature of God
- The unity of creation
- The nature of reality
- Human creativity
- The beauty and wonder of mathematics
- Infinity
- The Fibonacci Sequence
- The Golden Ratio
IV. The usefulness of mathematics
- Stewardship
- Use and interpretation of data
V. Critiquing existing schemes

Notes

I. Theoretical Perspectives
- Number-World Theory: mathematical symbols stand for real entities in an eternal and
changeless world.
- Empiricist view: mathematical symbols and formulae simply generalizations which are
deduced from sensory perceptions and concrete experiences.
- Logicist: mathematic is a particular way of doing logic
- Instrumentalist: mathematics simply a tool in which human being utilize to transform
their environment.

II. Rationale, aims, and objectives for teaching mathematics


A Christian rationale for studying Mathematics would probably include discovering Gods
creativity and design, understanding its purpose, and responding to that knowledge by
using it in service of God, humanity and the rest of creation.

- Aims and objectives for teaching mathematics


Our first concern in mathematics is to help the student to understand Gods creation
more fully, his task in it, and how mathematics can help him fulfill his calling.
Goal of teaching and learning mathematics:
- The student must gain an understanding of the concepts of numbers and space and
their interrelationship.
- The student must deepen his/her awareness and understanding of mathematics as a
functional tool in solving everyday problems and explaining quantitative and
spatial situations.
- The student must realize that mathematics is a developing science that has been
influence by the cultural forces.

- Rationale and objectives for the study of mathematics


Teaching mathematics is based on the premises:
- The Laws found in creation
- God is the Source of all mathematical structure
- Logic is an attribute of God
- Gods logic transcends our finite understanding of conventional rationality
- Understanding of number is dependent on the number system used
- Discovery of the nature and purposes of God is possible in more direct way if we
are expose to creation
- We have the potential to reason and to solve problems
- The findings of mathematicians should be considered in the light of a godly
perspective before they are taught as a truth
- The discipline of mathematical thought and practice is not divorced from the
faculties

- Charis Mathematics Project aims


The teachers responsibility is to develop the mathematical skills and understanding
and also to involve the students in the development of the whole person (moral and
spiritual).
The approaches to the teaching of mathematics would encourage the inclusion of the
moral and spiritual dimension.
- Mathematics has been developed and applied in a wide range of human situations,
thus it is possible to use different contexts to reflect on human issues while using
mathematics.
- While exploring ideas, insights can also be gained in other areas.
- Recognizing how mathematics has been used to model and understand the universe
and thus to develop a sense of awe and wonder at the reality around them.

III. Curriculum development


- The nature of God
The study of mathematics assists in developing an awareness of the nature of God and
of His creation; His creativity, integrity and faithfulness.
- The unity of creation
Mathematics is an important area of human activity that explains the quantitative
aspects of other disciplines. Mathematical concepts and ideas can help us to gain a
better understanding of natural sciences, economics, social sciences, etc.
- The nature of reality
Mathematics is primarily about modeling; expressing the nature of things in symbols
and shapes.
The symbols are mathematical language which needs to be developed from the
concrete to the abstract. The study of mathematics thus provides a way by which we
can understand the nature of creation and through that the nature of God.
- Human creativity
Through the exploration, investigation and discovery of the world in mathematics are
the component of the curriculum.

- The beauty and wonder of mathematics


- Infinity
The study of infinite sets should encourage a respect of Gods greatness and develop
in us a sense of humility.
- The Fibonacci Sequence
Occurs in a very special way and it has an incredible number of very remarkable
algebraic and geometric properties.
- The Golden Ratio
The ancient Greek believed that a rectangle whose ratio of length to width was
approximately 1.618 was the most pleasing to the eye.
The existence of beauty in this world does not prove that there is God, let alone
prove Christianity is true.

IV. The usefulness of mathematics


- Stewardship
Stewardship and accountability are two particularly important concepts inherit in a
Christian approach to mathematics.
- Use and interpretation of data
Statistical analysis and conclusions are applied in various situations to make decisions,
to inform opinion, to draw conclusions and help Christians be more responsible
citizens and stewards of Gods world.

V. Critiquing existing schemes


- What are the fundamental ideas behind the scheme?
- What world-vies does it convey to children?
- Do the materials help point out the beauty of Gods mathematical law structure in His
creation?

Reflection
From this reading, I learned that Math is an essential knowledge that all learners
should be equipped with. Mathematics is not a subject that the learners should be afraid of.
Even though in Mathematics there are logics beyond our comprehension, the teachers are
accountable to help the students see the value of Mathematics. In addition, logic is an
attribute of God and the learners should understand that in studying Mathematics, they would
gain a better understanding of God through the logics in Mathematics.