EDMA Journal Week 6

EDFX241 starts this week. Reflect on your first professional experience day –a-week visit. What mathematics did you see, hear, read? Why do you think the classroom is set up the way it is for mathematics learning?

My first professional experience is a kindergarten class at Homebush West Public School. My first day was full of excitement that I’m beginning my practical in me degree. Observing kindergarten, I had changed in my perceptions of education about how it is run and moving away from the traditional straight rows of desks in the classroom. What interested me was the mathematics. Mathematics was done in the morning after guided literacy. The teacher introduced the learning intention: “Describe the position of an object using everyday language”, MAe-16MG (NSW Education Standards Authority, 2017). The teacher modelled with another student if she is in front, next to or behind the teacher. The activity for the class was with a partner to position a small bear near the cup, whether it be inside, above or beside, and the other student in full sentence says where the bear is in relation to the cup. This helps build the students everyday language but also mathematical vocabulary as mathematics isn’t always numbers. (Greenes et al., 2004). Understanding vocabulary helps understand work problems that is crucial in understanding and problem solving (Greenes et al., 2004). What was interesting, was the students didn’t all have tables and chairs, but rather a montessori classroom. It became a self-directed and an own exploration of learning (Churchill et al., 2015). This encourages interactivity rather than formal seating arrangements. The teacher with ease, observed partner to partner in a formative assessment.

Reference List:

Churchill, R., Godinho, S., Johnson, NF., Keddie, A., Letts, W., Lowe, K., … Vick, M. (2015). Teaching; Making a difference (3rd Edition). Milton. Queensland: Wiley.

Greenes, C., Ginsburg, H.P., Balfanz, R. (2004). Big Math for Little Kids. Early Childhood Research Quarterly, 19(1), 159–166. doi: http://doi.org.ezproxy2.acu.edu.au/10.1016/j.ecresq.2004.01.010

NSW Education Standards Authority. (2017). Mathematics K-10 — Early Stage 1 — Measurement and Geometry: Position (MAe-16MG). Retrieved from: http://syllabus.nesa.nsw.edu.au/mathematics/mathematics-k10/content/696/

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