White, P., Wilson, S., Faragher, R. & Mitchelmore, M. (2007). Percentages as Part Whole Relationships. 2J Watson, K Beswick. 805-814. Hobart, Australia: Mathematics Education Research Group of Australasia.
Five practising teachers in regional NSW implemented Teaching for Abstraction for the Year 6 topic “Percentages”. The authors constructed materials for a unit in which students explored familiar percentage contexts, searched for similarities in their mathematical structures and then applied their learnings to more abstract situations. Particular emphasis was given to additive versus multiplicative approaches in different percentage situations. After an introductory workshop, teachers taught the topic in eight 40 minute lessons. The results show that even though this approach is radically different from that to which students and teachers are accustomed, it has the potential to benefit student engagement, learning, and attitudes for both students and teachers. The overall conclusions have implications for how professional development for Teaching for Abstraction is addressed.
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