Fifth Graders' Enumeration of Cubes in 3D Arrays: Conceptual Progress in an Inquiry-Based Classroom

  • Battista M
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In this study I utilize psychological and sociocultural components
of a constructivist paradigm to provide a detailed analysis of how
the cognitive constructions students make as they enumerate 3D arrays
of cubes develop and change in an inquiry-based problem-centered
math- ematics classroom. I describe the classroom work of 3 pairs
of 5th graders on an instructional activity involving predicting
the number of cubes that fit in graphically depicted boxes, and I
carefully explicate how the mental processes of abstraction, reflection,
perturbation, spatial structuring, and coordination, along with face-to-face
social interaction within pairs, brought about meaningful and powerful
student learning.

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  • Michael T. Battista

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