Teaching Mathematics in Primary Schools

By Robyn Zevenbergen; Shelley Dole et al. | Go to book overview

CHAPTER 12
Patterns
and algebra

Why study patterns and algebra?

There are several reasons why patterns and algebra are important in school mathematics. In chapter 1, for example, mathematics is described as the study of patterns and relationships. Alternatively, one could say that pattern in a range of forms is an integral part of mathematics. For many years, mathematics in the early years of school has included activities based on patterns involving, for example, colour and shape. Number patterns are also an important topic in mathematics curricula because they are intrinsically interesting for students and can enrich students' knowledge and appreciation of number topics. Algebra is closely related to number and pattern (Ferrini-Mundy et al, 1997), and studying algebra can provide students with important problem solving tools. In recent years there have been increasing calls for pattern and algebra to be emphasised more in the earlier years of school (Usiskin, 1997; Yackel, 1997). 'Algebra learning has its roots in the early grades, when children notice regularities in the way that numbers work' (MacGregor and Stacey, 1999). Also, learning algebra well is very important from a perspective of equity, for algebra is regarded as the key to mathematical literacy

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Teaching Mathematics in Primary Schools
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page *
  • Foreword v
  • Contents vii
  • About This Book xi
  • About the Authors xiii
  • Chapter 1 - The Changing Face of Primary Mathematics 1
  • Further Reading *
  • References *
  • Chapter 2 - Theoretical Foundations for Contemporary Mathematics Education 21
  • Further Reading *
  • References *
  • Chapter 3 - Language and Mathematics 33
  • Further Reading *
  • References *
  • Chapter 4 - Diversity and Equity 47
  • Further Reading *
  • References *
  • Chapter 5 - Planning for Teaching 63
  • Further Reading *
  • References *
  • Chapter 6 - Assessment 79
  • Further Reading *
  • References 105
  • Chapter 7 - Working Mathematically 106
  • Further Reading *
  • References *
  • Chapter 8 - Early Number 121
  • Further Reading *
  • References 147
  • Chapter 9 - Basic Facts and Mental Computation 149
  • Further Reading 174
  • References *
  • Chapter 10 - Written Algorithms 176
  • Further Reading 196
  • References *
  • Chapter 11 - Rational Number 197
  • Further Reading *
  • References *
  • Chapter 12 - Patterns and Algebra 233
  • Further Reading *
  • References *
  • Chapter 13 - Measurement 250
  • Further Reading *
  • References 280
  • Chapter 14 - Chance and Data 281
  • Further Reading *
  • References *
  • Chapter 15 - Space 310
  • Further Reading *
  • References *
  • Index 340
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