Facing the Mathematics: Students’ Critical Awareness of the Elusiveness of Mathematical Objects

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2011

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Taylor & Francis

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What happens when mathematics students are invited to ask questions and make observations about the way discourse works in their classroom? This article describes my extended conversation with a high school mathematics class about a phenomenon that caught the attention of two girls in the class. Together we observed and reflected on the direction of one’s gaze during mathematics conversations. This discussion came about while I co-taught this class, prompting the students daily to become more aware of their language practices in class. This ‘critical language awareness’ effort aimed to address inequities in power relations within the classroom discourse by inviting student perspectives and resulted in drawing two students’ attention to the power of symbols.

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