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C&I professor and two of her students address teaching methods and classroom discussions in mathematics journal articles

by The College of Education / May 23, 2013

Gloriana González (left photo) and Anna F. DeJarnette are the authors of two recently published journal articles. The first, which appeared in the April 2013 issue of Mathematics Teacher, was titled "Geometric Reasoning about a Circle Problem." The second was featured in the May 2013 issue of "Mathematics Teaching in the Middle School" (MTMS) and was titled "Leading Classroom Discussions."

González is an assistant professor in the Department of Curriculum and Instruction and DeJarnette (MS '12 Sec. Ed. with a concentration in mathematics) is a doctoral student in C&I.

Both journals are published by the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics.

The Mathematics Teacher article explores what problem-based instruction does for students and teachers and how it can help students develop their mathematical proficiency. The MTMS article addresses ways for teachers to lead effective classroom discussions and includes examples from research-based observations.

González's research focuses on how teachers manage students' prior knowledge in problem-based instruction. She is interested in examining teachers' decision-making when handling students' prior knowledge and the rationality underlying those decisions. She has studied this question in the particular case of the high school geometry class, which has special demands for the teaching and learning of mathematics. DeJarnette is interested in students' discourse during group work.

DeJarnette, along with recent U of I graduate Jennifer Dao and González, have also authored an article slated for Mathematics Teaching in the Middle School. The article, which has been accepted but not yet published, will address how to promote productive small-group discussions.

Dao, both a James and a Noyce scholar, earned her bachelor's degree this spring with a major in mathematics and a minor in secondary education. Dao began working with González as part of Dao's James Scholar honors project, and then continued to be part of the research group even after her project concluded.

The articles in MTMS are based on a Hardie Award that González won in 2011.