n Learning and Teaching Mathematics - Promoting student-to-student discourse in small groups : findings of a practitioner action research project

Volume 2012, Issue 12
  • ISSN : 1990-6811


"Effective discourse happens when students articulate their own ideas and seriously consider their peers' mathematical perspectives as a way to construct mathematical understandings" (NCTM, 2010). Establishing a classroom community in which discourse is an integral part of teaching and learning can be challenging, especially if students are more accustomed to being passive listeners rather than active participants in the mathematics classroom. As a classroom teacher, I found myself in this situation. Although I incorporated both small-group and whole-class discussions into my lessons, I was particularly interested in promoting discourse between students while they were working in small groups: How should I help students when they are working in groups? Do my interactions promote or hinder student-to-student communication? How do I encourage students to listen to and evaluate each others' explanations?

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