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Teaching through problem solving: bridging the gap between vision and practice

Resource type
Thesis type
(Thesis) M.A.
Date created
This thesis examines a mathematics classroom where students are taught mathematics through problem solving. Weekly observations of two different classrooms were done. One was an Honors of Math 10 class and the other was a Math 11 class. In addition to the observations, student interviews were conducted throughout the semester with the intent of speaking to a number of students with a broad range of ability levels and diverse attitudes about mathematics. The aim was to explore whether or not students will buy in. Is it possible to create this dynamic, problem solving environment consistently within a classroom? Can it be done within the context of the current curriculum? How does teaching through problem solving affect low achieving students? And how does this pedagogy influence students' relationships with mathematics? The findings show that creating this environment is possible even within the current provincial curriculum and moreover, that this pedagogy generally led students to experience a deeper engagement with mathematical ideas.
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The author granted permission for the file to be printed and for the text to be copied and pasted.
Scholarly level
Supervisor or Senior Supervisor
Thesis advisor: Liljedahl, Peter
Member of collection
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etd7370_DMatheson.pdf 2.33 MB

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