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Mathematical relationships in education. Identities and participation. (English)
Routledge Research in Education. London: Routledge (ISBN 978-0-415-99684-6/hbk; 978-0-203-87611-4/ebook). xiv, 251~p. (2009).
This book is the result of a seminar series entitled “Mathematical relationships: identities and participation" held in the UK some years ago. The six seminars brought together a number of researchers and practitioners working in the areas of mathematics education. This book is an edited collection mostly of the papers presented at those seminars, with addition contributions from other international scholars. The starting point for the series was the paradox of better results in mathematics examinations juxtaposed with an increasing rejection of the subject at the post compulsory level. We need to focus on the relationships that learners form with mathematics in the context of formal schooling. The book has six parts. The first five reflect these policy and practise foci, each addressing a central question ‒ about selection and assessment, choice, curriculum, pedagogy, and teacher development. An increasing policy emphasis on assessment and selection has led to high levels of anxiety impacting on how learners construct their identities. In the area of curriculum, the specialised language forms and strategies used in mathematics teaching differentially favour some social groups in terms of class, cultural background, gender. A wide body of research indicates that mathematics can be made more accessible in classrooms which encourage exploration, negotiation, and ownership of knowledge and their corresponding identity shifts. Thus has implication for teacher development, but also requires recognition that teachers own mathematical identities.
Reviewer: Valentina Dagienë (Vilnius)
Classification: D10 C10 B70
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