This paper reports on the strategies chosen by a group of sixth-grade students in an urban informal learning program as they worked to solve an open-ended, nonroutine task. In particular, the paper focuses on the ability of these students to rise above their previous, procedure-based misconceptions and arrive at a mathematically reasonable solution. Aspects of the problem task, the problem-solving environment, and, importantly, of the nature of the teacher’s interventions are analyzed to determine the conditions that encouraged students to approach mathematics as a logical, meaningful, sense-making activity.
Mueller, Mary; Yankelewitz, Dina; and Maher, Carolyn
"Rules Without Reason: Allowing Students to Rethink Previous Conceptions,"
The Mathematics Enthusiast: Vol. 7
, Article 9.
Available at: http://scholarworks.umt.edu/tme/vol7/iss2/9