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Tool Talking Mathematics: Supporting Children’s Voices

Summary

Talking Mathematics: Supporting Children’s Voices is a book that offers strategies to help teachers engage students in mathematical discourse. Teachers are encouraged to do mathematics as a learner, reflect on their own thinking, try some strategies, reflect on their teaching, and reflect on students’ thinking. Additionally, the tool discusses purposes for the role of talk in developing mathematical thinking and learning. The selected readings in the book frame many of the instructional challenges teachers face around engaging students in mathematical discussions, offer strategies for exploration, and encourage reflection. A complementary videotape, Talking Mathematics: Supporting Classroom Discourse, provides video images for what the strategies look and sound like when students are talking about their ways of thinking and reasoning.

Teachers could benefit from group discussions and analysis of videotapes of their own practices around mathematical talk. Some of the tensions teachers have regarding teaching for understanding, breadth vs. depth, inquiry based learning vs. direct teaching, listening, asking “good” questions, and managing discussions are addressed in the book. These are important issues that could lead to substantive topics for study group discussions.

Authors: Rebecca B. Corwin, Judith Storeygard, Sabra L. Price

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