This study compares students’ opportunities to engage in transformational (rule-based) algebraic activity between 2 classes taught by the same teacher and across 2 topics in beginning algebra: forming and investigating algebraic expressions and equivalence of algebraic expressions. It comprises 2 case studies; each involves a teacher teaching in two 7th grade classes. All 4 classes used the same textbook. Analysis of classroom videotapes (15–19 lessons in each class) revealed that the opportunities to engage in transformational algebraic activity related to forming and investigating algebraic expressions were similar in each teacher’s 2 classes. By contrast, substantial differences were found between 1 teacher’s classes with regard to the opportunities to engage in transformational algebraic activity related to equivalence of algebraic expressions. The discussion highlights the contribution of the interplay among the mathematical topic, the teacher, and the class to shaping students’ learning opportunities. Specifically, the mathematical topic appeared to play a prominent role in certain situations, with the topic involving deductive reasoning generating high variation in classes of 1 teacher but not in the other’s.
|Number of pages
|International Journal of Science and Mathematics Education
|Published - 1 May 2015
Bibliographical notePublisher Copyright:
© 2013, National Science Council, Taiwan.
- beginning algebra
- classes taught by the same teacher
- classroom research
- deductive reasoning
- equivalence of expressions
- mathematical topic
- opportunities to learn
- transformational algebraic activity
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- General Mathematics