
06454569
j
2015d.00704
Blanton, Maria
Stephens, Ana
Knuth, Eric
Gardiner, Angela Murphy
Isler, Isil
Kim, JeeSeon
The development of children's algebraic thinking: the impact of a comprehensive early algebra intervention in third grade.
J. Res. Math. Educ. 46, No. 1, 3987 (2015).
2015
National Council of Teachers of Mathematics (NCTM), Reston, VA
EN
H32
H22
F32
D32
D42
algebra
algebraic thinking
early algebra
intervention
child development
teaching methods
educational practices
educational strategies
student reaction
equations
symbols
mathematical applications
arithmetic
elementary grades
http://www.nctm.org/Publications/journalforresearchinmathematicseducation/2015/Vol46/Issue1/TheDevelopmentofChildren_sAlgebraicThinking_TheImpactofaComprehensiveEarlyAlgebraInterventioninThirdGrade/
Summary: This article reports results from a study investigating the impact of a sustained, comprehensive early algebra intervention in third grade. Participants included 106 students; 39 received the early algebra intervention, and 67 received their district's regularly planned mathematics instruction. We share and discuss students' responses to a written pre and postassessment that addressed their understanding of several big ideas in the area of early algebra, including mathematical equivalence and equations, generalizing arithmetic, and functional thinking. We found that the intervention group significantly outperformed the nonintervention group and was more apt by posttest to use algebraic strategies to solve problems. Given the multitude of studies among adolescents documenting students' difficulties with algebra and the serious consequences of these difficulties, an important contribution of this research is the finding that  provided the appropriate instruction  children are capable of engaging successfully with a broad and diverse set of big algebraic ideas.