The case of disappearing and reappearing zeros: a disconnection between procedural knowledge and conceptual understanding

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    Abstract

    We report on 25 Year 5-6 students’ written responses to two items taken from an assessment of mental computation fluency with multiplication, alongside their reasoning of the strategy they had employed, which may or may not have made use of the associative property. Coding of this interview data revealed four distinct levels of conceptual understanding of the associative property, which teachers could use to inform their planning. The findings reveal the complexity associated with assessing multiplicative mental computational fluency and students’ reliance on procedures often considered by them to be more magical than logical.
    Original languageEnglish
    Title of host publicationMathematics Education Research: Impacting Practice
    Subtitle of host publicationProceedings of the 42nd annual conference of the Mathematics Education Research Group of Australasia
    EditorsGregory Hine, Susan Blackley, Audrey Cooke
    Place of PublicationAdelaide SA Australia
    PublisherMathematics Education Research Group of Australasia
    Pages236-243
    Number of pages8
    Publication statusPublished - 2019
    EventAnnual conference of the Mathematics Education Research Group of Australasia 2019 - Curtin University, Perth, Australia
    Duration: 30 Jun 20194 Jul 2019
    Conference number: 42nd
    https://merga.net.au/Public/Publications/Annual_Conference_Proceedings/2019-MERGA-conference-proceedings.aspx (Proceedings)

    Conference

    ConferenceAnnual conference of the Mathematics Education Research Group of Australasia 2019
    Abbreviated titleMERGA 2019
    Country/TerritoryAustralia
    CityPerth
    Period30/06/194/07/19
    Internet address

    Keywords

    • mathematics education
    • Multiplicative thinking
    • Associative property

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