Elementary School Geometry Teachers’ Conceptions of Geometry and Teaching Geometry and their Practices

By Wajeeh Daher and Otman Jaber.

Published by The Social Sciences Collection

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Article: Print $US10.00
Article: Electronic $US5.00

Thirty two elementary school geometry teachers who teach grades three to five and twenty elementary school geometry teachers who teach grades one and two were interviewed for 30-45 minutes each, about their conceptions of geometry, their conception of the need to teach geometry in the elementary school, their teaching methods, what they think about the success or failure of their teaching methods and what geometric skills they think are necessary for the elementary school students. We analyzed the teachers’ interviews using the grounded theory approach and found that the teachers perceived geometry as a science characterized by certain properties, as a science that benefits the learner and as a science which has multiple connections. The teachers justified the teaching of geometry in the elementary school looking at two factors: the benefits of geometry to the student and its fitness to him/her. The two groups of elementary teachers emphasized the importance of tools in the teaching of geometry. Teachers of grades one and two emphasized more the groupings of students, while teachers of grades three to six emphasized more the teacher and the learning material. Tools were held responsible for the success and failure of teaching methods, so researchers and designers are invited to try increasing the repertoire of tools available for elementary school geometry teachers. The two groups of elementary teachers emphasized specific geometric skills and general geometric skills as important skills that the elementary school students should acquire.

Keywords: Teachers’ Conceptions, Geometry, Teaching Methods, Successful Teaching Methods, The Need to Teach Geometry, Geometric Skills, Essential Skills

International Journal of Interdisciplinary Social Sciences, Volume 5, Issue 1, pp.139-156. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 656.512KB).

Dr. Wajeeh Daher

Head of Mathematics Department, Department of Mathematics, An-Najah National University, Palestine and Al-Qasemi Academic College of Education, Nazareth, Israel

Dr. Wajeeh Daher has academic degrees in mathematics, mathematics education, technological education, economics and accounting. His Ph.D. is in in the field of web based mathematics education.His interests vary from scientific zones to Literature. His research interests include distance learning, alternative methods to teach mathematics, technology in mathematics education, and teachers’ education. He wrote articles that probe the using of technology in the mathematics classroom, the using of history in the mathematics classroom and the using of literature and language. He practiced and researched distance learning. Nowadays He participates with another colleague in introducing the cellular phone into the middle school mathematics classroom and in finding the influence of this introduction on students learning teachers’ teaching methods and strategies. Dr. Wajeeh Daher believes in life-long learning as well as in life long self renewing. Self renewing can be done through adapting new technologies and media in our learning and everyday practices.

Otman Jaber

Lecturer, Math Center Coordinator, Math Center, Mathematics Department, Al-Qasemi Academic College of Education, Baka, Israel

Otman Jaber has M.A. in mathematics. He is a lecturer of mathematics and a pedagogic coacher in Al-Qasemi College of Education, and is the math center coordinator there. Otman Jaber is interested in mathematics teaching research and in teacher education research.

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