Academic journal article Australian Primary Mathematics Classroom

Editorial

Academic journal article Australian Primary Mathematics Classroom

Editorial

Article excerpt

I am writing this editorial on my return from the 13 th International Congress of Mathematics Education (ICME13) in Hamburg, Germany. As these congresses only occur about once every four years, it is always wonderful to catch up with old friends and colleagues and make new contacts from countries around the world. This year ICME13 attracted over 4000 mathematics educators, an increase of over 100% from my first ICME in Adelaide in 1984. It was interesting to note that some of the initiatives introduced in Adelaide are still in place 32 years later.

One of the things I always enjoy about international conferences is having the opportunity to see how Australia is positioned in mathematics education compared to other countries. The other aspect I like is having the opportunity to see, hear and meet those mathematics educators whose work I have read over the years. This year was no exception with Deborah Loewenberg Ball, Maria Blanton, Nicolina Malara, David Carraher, Carolyn Kiernan and Deborah Schifter among those I had the privilege to see for the first time. Of the 54 Topic Study Groups working at ICME approximately half were aimed at early childhood and primary educators.

With the coming together of an international mathematics educator community, ICME is the forum for important international awards to be conferred. A new award was introduced this year, The Emma Castelnuovo Award (2015) for outstanding achievements in the practice of mathematics education. The practical nature of this award really appealed to me, as in the past awards were only made for excellence in research-based activities. I was delighted when Hugh Burkhardt and Malcolm Swan (UK) were the recipients. Hugh and Malcolm have dedicated their lives to mathematics education through the wonderful work they have done through the Shell Centre at the University of Nottingham. Congratulations also to Alan Bishop (Australia) on being awarded the prestigious Felix Klein Medal for lifelong achievement in mathematics education research.

Much like the range of presenters at ICME13, this issue of the Australian Primary Mathematics Classroom has contributions from all around Australia and beyond. Sarah Selmer and her colleagues from West Virginia in the USA describe the use of Garden Based Learning (GBL) as an integrated mathematics and science unit. …

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