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EMM209 Assessment One: Short response papers

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EMM209
Mathematics:
Content and
Pedagogy
Assessment One
Short Response
Papers
Josie Morrow
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1. A teacher was planning on giving the following problem


to their class: Find the perimeter of the rectangular
sand-pit shown which has a length of 5m and width of
2m".
a) This problem is quite closed. Re-write the problem, or make up a
new one, so that it is now open-ended.
b) Explain why your new problem is open ended and why it will
encourage problem solving.
c) Based on your new problem for part (a), what question(s) would
you ask of children to guide them through the second step in
Polyas four point plan for solving problems?
a) The total perimeter of the new sandpit at home is 14m. What
possible lengths and widths might this sandpit have? Is there more
than one solution? If so, what variations of shape can the perimeter
take and how much sand can it hold?
b)

The open-ended task differs from the closed task as it actively


engages learners in higher order thinking processes, enhancing
the potential for construction on new knowledge as the openended questions prompt learners to choose their problem-solving
journey. Encouraging students to explore and apply their
knowledge as well as be creative, this open-ended activity allows
for multiple responses whereby students are capable of
completing the task reflective of their true abilities. Furthermore,
this open-ended problem is more accessible than the closed
example; in that students can apply what knowledge they have
about perimeter to explore aspects of measurement, shape, area
and volume whereas the closed question requires the recall of
specific perimeter formulae. By offering an opportunity for
extension of mathematical thinking, students can explore a
range of options as well as consider forms of generalised
responses (Sullivan, n.d., p. 1)

c)

First, we have to understand the problem; we have to see


clearly what is required. Second, we have to see how the various
items are connected, how the unknown is linked to the data, in
order to obtain the idea of the solution, to make a plan. Third, we
carry out our plan. Fourth, we look back at the completed
solution, we review and discuss it (Polya, 1945, p. 5).
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From a problem-solving view, mathematics is a dynamic practice


where students learn by actively engaging in the creative process.
Motivated to teach students skills in the area of inquiry-based
learning, George Polya identified four basic principles for problem
solving.
1. Understanding the problem
2. Devising a plan
3. Carrying out the plan
4. Looking back
When scaffolding students responses to the modified open-ended
problem above, a range of questions and strategies can be
employed to support students understanding and assist them when
devising a plan to solve the problem. Acknowledging that there are
many ways to solve a problem, students are encouraged to engage
learn by trial and error as selecting an appropriate strategy is best
learnt by experimenting and solving many problems.
Strategies

Draw a picture
Use a model
Work backwards
Eliminate possibilities

Questions
Have you seen this problem before? Or have you seen the same
problem in a different form?
Could you solve a part of the problem?
If you cannot solve this problem, can you try and solve a related
problem?
Can you think of and/or draw a picture/diagram that might be able
to assist you?

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EMM209 Assessment One: Short response papers

2.
a)

b)
c)
d)
e)

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Counting
Explain clearly the meaning of each of the following pre-number
concepts. Outline briefly how you would use concrete material to
assess the understanding of the following concepts with a young
child:
Patterning
One-to-one correspondence
Sorting and classifying
There are four (4) main counting principles. Clearly explain each
of the four (4). You may use examples and/or diagrams to clarify
your explanation.
What kind of knowledge is required to be able to count with
understanding?
Explain the difference between rhythmic and skip counting. How
do these methods of counting help a child learn the
multiplication facts?
Define the following number terms:
Cardinal
Ordinal
Nominal
When teaching the following pre-number concepts to young
children it is important to use concrete materials and
representations to assess students knowledge and skills as they
allow students to effectively communicate a range of
mathematical ideas and their understanding about concepts to
both themselves and others (Siemon et al., 2011). Furthermore,
using materials increases students engagement, development,
of internal representations, and ability to apply their

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understanding to real-life situations (Siemon et al., 2011, p.


106).
Patterning
When learning patterns, students are provided with an
opportunity to observe, hypothesise, experiment, discover and
apply their knowledge and skills to a range of contexts.
Introduced from Early Stage 1, the pre algebraic concept of
patterns is developed through the use of both numbers and
objects. The process of patterning involves, understanding
regularities based on the data we gather [allowing us to] predict
what comes next, estimate if the same pattern will occur when
variables are alters and begin to extend the pattern (Buchanan,
2011).
Concrete materials: The use of concrete materials (such as
coloured counters) would enable students to demonstrate their
understanding of patterns by providing them with a physical and
visual tool for their inquiry and learning.
One-to-one correspondence
Whilst most students can recite the number sequence
accurately, they can have difficulty establishing one-to-one
correspondence when counting a set of objects, in early
counting development one-to-one correspondence refers to the
matching of one and only one number word to each element of a
collection (Board of Studies NSW, 2012, p. 479).
Concrete materials: To assess students understanding of the
relationship between two sets of objects, whereby every element
of the first set corresponds with one element of the second set,
concrete materials (such as magnets) can aid students inquiry
as they are encouraged to physically manipulate their
environment to demonstrate their understanding.
Sorting and classifying
Sorting and classifying objects is the process of comparing
objects then organising them into groups based on common
characteristics such as size, colour, shape etc. whilst also being
able to justify the classification system, not only does it teach
children about attributes and relationships, but it also promotes
thinking logically and applying rules (Shaw, n.d., p. 2).
Concrete materials: With the use of concrete materials (such
as lego) students are able to physically demonstrate their
thinking and understanding when classifying and sorting a range
of objects in a variety of ways.
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a) When researching the main counting principles, 5 fundamental


principles of counting were identified:
1. One-One principle
The one-one principle identifies that one counting word
must be assigned to each of the items to be counted.
When following this process, students are expected to be
able to separate the set of objects to be counted into two
categories: those that have been allocated a number and
those that have not.
2. Stable-order principle
Understanding that the counting sequence
remains consistent, this principle means
that the numbers used must be in the
same repeatable order.
3. Cardinal principle
This principle recognises that the last
count of the group of objects represents
the quantity/total number of objects within
the set. When students are learning this
basic skill they must have the
understanding that the previous steps of
counting were performed as a means of
achieving this objective.
4. Abstraction principle
This principle states that the preceding principles can be
applied to any set of objects, tangible or not; tangible
items consisting of things that are moveable, such as
counters and non-physical things consisting of sounds,
words etc.
5. Order-irrelevance principle
As the name implies, this
principle refers to the
understanding that the order
in which items are counted is
irrelevant. The order in which
the set of objects are
counted is not important so
long as every item in the collection is counted once only.
(Thompson, n.d.)

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b) The Australian mathematics curriculum defines understanding as


including building robust knowledge of adaptable and
transferable mathematical concepts, the making of connections
between related concepts, the confidence to use the familiar to
develop new ideas, and the why as well as the how of
mathematics (National Curriculum Board, 2009, p.6). When
recognising counting as a fundamental mathematical skill,
conceptual and procedural knowledge is required in order for
students to count with understanding. With the knowledge and
skills to use appropriate terminology, counting principles, number
facts and models, students can now apply and practice this
knowledge to a range of contexts. To count with understanding
students need to:
Know the number naming sequence
Match number words to objects in one-one correspondence
Recognise invariance of cardinality
Understand that the last number counted says how many.
(Siemon et al., 2011, p.
285)
c) Basic methods of counting multiples and equal groups can be
modelled and developed using rhythmic counting and skip
counting.
Rhythmic counting is counting to a regular beat to emphasise a
number sequence or pattern whereby all numbers are spoken but
greater emphasis is placed on selected numbers to coincide with
a particular beat.
e.g.

1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10
(All numbers are spoken, but the blue numbers are said with
greater emphasis)

Skip counting encourages students to see patterns in numbers as


well as forms the foundation for learning multiplication facts.
e.g.

0, 1, 2,

3, 4, 5,
6, 7, 8, 9, 10

(Counting by twos, the only numbers that are said aloud are the

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multiples of 2, blue numbers)


Patterns are a powerful way to learn multiplication facts, with
extensive experience of both rhythmic and skip counting,
students are provided with the essential prior knowledge
required to master these facts. Building students automaticity
and understanding of multiplication are important components of
mastering basic math facts (OConnell & SanGiovanni, 2011).
Through the use of rhythmic and skip counting, students ability
to understand, memorise and recall multiplication facts are
enhanced.
d)

Terms and their definitions Cardinal: the value given to the total amount of items in a
collection (Siemon et al., 2011).
Ordinal: is the number used to classify order of position,
e.g. 1st, 2nd, 3rd Cardinal: the value given to the total
amount of items in a collection (Siemon et al., 2011).
Nominal: are categorical numbers that are used for
identification only. For instance a used only to identify
something not as a value or position.

3.

Rational numbers can be represented using linear,

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regional or discrete models.


a) Show each of the rational numbers given below using the three
(3) models: (i.e. 12 representations)
b) The concept of equivalence is fundamental to the understanding
of fractions. Outline an activity which would help students
understand equivalent fractions by using diagrams.
c) Draw a timeline that highlights the conceptual development of
fractions and decimals
1
2

a) 3/4
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10Linear
11121314151617181920
21222324252627282930
Discrete
31323334353637383940
41424344454647484950
51525354555657585960
61626364656667686970
71727374757677787980
81828384858687888990
919293949596979899100
101
102
103
104
105
106
107
108
109
110
111
112
113
114
115
116118120
121123125
126128130
131133135
136138140
60%
141143145
146148150
Linear
151153155
156158160
Discrete
161163165
166
167
168
169171
172174
17517710
178180
18118311
1
184186
18718912
190192
193195
196198

3
4
5
6

7
8
9
0

13
14
15
16
17 2.4
18 Linear
Discrete
19

Regional

Regional

Regional
20

21
22
23 1 and 2/3
Linear

Regional

Discrete

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b) Understanding fraction equivalence necessitates students


recognise that two or more fractions can represent the same
quantity, thus belonging to an
equivalence set (Wong & Evans, 2007, p. 82)

Equivalent Fraction Activity: Pizza Problems


Class Discussion:
Students, together with a partner, will be shown
the image below. Together they will be asked to
equally distribute the pieces of pizza between
the two of them, How many pieces will you
each get?
Once students have solved the problem they will
discuss why one person only receives 3 pieces
while their partner receives 4.
Individual/Group Work
Students will be placed into small groups of
6 members. In these small groups each
member will receive a different pizza
template to decorate.
Students will cut their pizza into pieces and
label them on the back as per the fraction
assigned to them e.g. Thirds
The teacher will display equivalent fraction
problems corresponding with those on their
worksheet and together as a group they are
to create both fractions on their plate.
Students will continue to work through the
problems as a group being challenged after
a few to see if they can work the problem
out before having to use the pizza representations to check
their answers.

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c) Draw a timeline that highlights the conceptual development of


fractions and decimals.

http://technomaths.edublogs.org/tag/fractions/

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4.

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TinkerPlots and Excel are data analysis software


packages used by teachers to help children understand
data.
a) Which one do you prefer? Identify an advantage and
disadvantage associated with using each of these specific
packages.
b) Young children are introduced to chance through talking about
the likelihood of familiar events. Using the ELPSARA framework,
design three sequenced activities to develop childrens
conceptual understanding of the important ideas associated with
chance. One activity should be for early primary (eg. Stage 1),
the second should be for mid-primary (eg. Stage 2) and the third
should be for upper primary (eg. Stage 3). State explicitly what
these important ideas are.
a) Spreadsheets have been used in teacher education to explore a
variety of mathematical concepts and to help students use
numerical and graphical methods to solve problems (Drier,
2001, p. 107).
Furthermore they have been used to scaffold and facilitate
students exploration and engagement with mathematical
concepts and their understanding of relationships among
numerical, graphical and algebraic representations. Two data
analysis programs used to assist students understanding of data
are TinkerPlots and Excel.
TinkerPlots
Advantage: a beneficial component of using TinkerPlots for data
analysis in the classroom is the visual representation of data;
students can quickly access, analyse and interpret graphed data

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that can be easily represented in many forms (Watson & Donne,


2009).
Disadvantage: one limitation of using TinkerPlots is that most
students will not be familiar with the program and therefore
extensive exploration, explanation and demonstration may be
required before students begin their experiment.
Excel
Advantage: Excel is capable of storing large amounts of data
enabling users to search, filter, access, analyse and analyses
vast information quickly. Combined with tables and graphs, data
can be presented in a tangible and compact way (Accpheditor,
2013)
Disadvantage: data organisation differs according to analysis
thereby in order to make different analyses the data must be
interpreted and reorganized in many ways (Goldwater, 2007).

b) Viewing learning as an active process where students construct


and develop ways of knowing, doing and understanding, the
ELPSARA framework identifies and acknowledges learning as
being social in nature.
Experience
Language
Pictorial representation
Symbolic representation
Application of knowledge
Reflection
Assessment

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Unit/Lesson Title: What Are The odds?


Stage: 1
Rationale
Syllabus Outcomes/Content
Explore, identify, analyse and evaluate data based
MA1-18SP
recognises and describ
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on probability and chance.
element of chance in everyda
ACMSP024
Identify outcomes of
familiar events involving chan
describe them using everyda
language, such as 'will happe
happen' or 'might happen'
Prior Knowledge
Resources
Represents data and interprets data displays
Scenarios
made from objects
Probability problem worksheet
Gathers and organises data, displays data in
Interactive whiteboard
lists, tables and picture graphs, and
Colour coded objects
interprets the results.
Assessment and
Content/Learning Experience
Teaching
C
Recording Strategies Activity
Strategies
Orga
Depth of responses

Observation

Questioning

The teacher prepares a set of scenarios


describing a variety of events. Together, as
a class, students will answer the probability
statements with will happen, might
happen, wont happen justifying their
responses as they go. Once a few events
have been explored students will continue
to do the same activity in pairs, classifying
the events underneath the headings will
happen, might happen and wont
happen
Introducing a cline, students will use this
pictorial representation to gauge future
events using the language most likely,
more likely and least likely
When referring to events, the teacher will
use familiar and everyday contexts such as
temperature, weather etc.
Extension: students are challenged to use this
language to make complete statements.

Interactive
instruction

Whole

Direct
instruction

Individu
Explicit
demonstration

Using already prepared sets of colour coded


objects, each table will receive a bag of
goodies with different denominations of
coloured objects e.g. 3 blue counters, 2 red
pencils, 1 yellow block. The teacher
demonstrates by retrieving one item from
the bag without looking and recording on a
tally on the whiteboard. This process is
repeated a number of times, returning the
object each time. Students are then required
to analyse and interpret the data by
answering questions such as what colour
Cooperative
was I least likely to pull out?
learning
After discussing the results, the teacher
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models what this looks like on the cline
diagram and what it sounds/looks like as a

Partner
work

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b)

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Unit/Lesson Title: What Are The Odds?
Stage: 2
Rationale
Syllabus Outcomes/Content
Exploring, identifying, analysing and evaluating
MA2-19SP
describes and compare
events and data results based on probability and
events in social and experime
chance.
contexts
ACMSP092
Describe possible
everyday events and order
their chances of occurring
Prior Knowledge
Resources
Selects appropriate methods to collect data,
Tokens
and constructs, compares, interprets and
Interactive whiteboard
evaluates data displays, including tables,
Written statement worksheets
picture graphs and column graphs.
M&Ms
Assessment and
Content/Learning Experience
Teaching
C
Recording Strategies Activity
Strategies
Orga
Observation

Active listening and


participation

Questioning

The teacher makes tokens for free time,


movie day and sporting activities in
varying amounts. Students in small groups
take it in turns to pull out tokens from the
box. After each turn students record their
results by putting a tally mark underneath
the correct heading on the grid work sheet.
At the end of the exercise, students tally
their results, recording the data and the
written statements that coincide with the
results. Once having completed this,
students will work as a class scaffolding
and modelling complete and true written
statements. This will then be completed
individually using the template provided.
With a small bag of M&Ms, the teacher has
dispersed 3 different coloured M&Ms in
each set for every table.
One colour large number size
One colour medium number size
One colour small number size
With these materials, students will
complete a cloze task describing the
contents of the bag, predicting which
colour M&M is most, more and least likely
to be drawn out before completing the
exercise as a table group.
Once the students have successfully
completed the activity they will discuss
their results and findings with the whole
class.

Cooperative
learning

Group

Direct
instruction

Whole

Cloze procedure

Discovery

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Small
work

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Unit/Lesson Title: What are the odds?


Stage: 3
Rationale
Syllabus Outcomes/Content
Explore, identify, analyse and evaluate data based
MA3-19SP
conducts chance exper
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on probability and chance
and assigns probabilities as v
between 0 and 1 to describe
outcomes
ACMSP116
List outcomes of chanc
experiments involving equally
outcomes and represent prob
of those outcomes using frac
Prior Knowledge
Resources
Uses appropriate methods to collect data and
Interactive whiteboard
constructs, interpret and evaluate data
String
displays.
Chance word cards
Describes and compares chance events in
Pegs
social and experimental contexts.
Assessment and
Content/Learning Experience
Teaching
C
Recording Strategies Activity
Strategies
Orga

Depth of responses

Observation

Contribution/participat
ion

Teacher will discuss with students different


metaphors such as:
Open
Once in a blue moon
discussion
Its raining cats and dogs
Pigs might fly
Will these events ever happen? What are
some events that have 0% chance of
happening? What are some events that are
certain of happening? What are some
events that have a 50/50 % percent
chance of occurring? Students will record
these events in a table modelled by the
teacher.
Problem solving
In small groups, students will measure a
1m length piece of string, labelling each
end with 0 and 1 and continuing to
divide/label the string into tenths great
exercise to prompt decimals and
equivalent fractions. Assigning probabilities
with values, students will discuss and
practice determining what chance words
would equate with 0 (impossible) and 1
(100% certain).
With a variety of task cards with chance
Cooperative
words labeled on them impossible, fiftylearning
fifty, likely, unlikely, certain etc.
Working together as a team, students will
place the chance cards along the number
line, producing a scale of chance
terminology from 0 1. All groups will
compare with one another discussing their
reasoning. Students will have an
opportunity to add to the number line with Brainstorming
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chance words of their choice.
Once having completed the task students

Whole c

Indepen
work

Group w

Whole c

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References
Acppheditor, B. (2013). Microsoft Excel: Advantages and benefits.
http://www.acpcomputer.edu.sg/index.php/microsoft-excel-advantagesand-benefits/
Board of Studies NSW (2012). Mathematics K-10 Sydney: Board of
Studies. Retrieved rom
http://syllabus.bos.nsw.edu.au/mathematics/mathematics-k10/.
Buchanan, M. (2001). Pattern power. Retrieved from
https://nrich.maths.org/2148
Drier, H. (2001). Teaching and learning mathematics with interactive
spreadsheets. Retrieved from
http://www.pucrs.br/famat/viali/tic_literatura/artigos/planilhas/Drier
.pdf
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Goldwater, E. (2007). Usinf Excel for statistical data analysis caveats.


Retrieved from http://people.umass.edu/evagold/excel.html
National Curriculum Board (NCB) (2009). Shape of the Australian
Curriculum: Mathematics. Canberra: Commonwealth of Australia.
OConnell, S, & SanGiovanni, J. (2011). Mastering the basic math facts
in multiplication and division. Retrieved from
https://www.heinemann.com/shared/onlineresources/E02962/ocon
nellmultweb.pdf).
Polya, G. (1945). How t solve it: A new aspect of mathematical method.
Retrieved from
https://notendur.hi.is/hei2/teaching/Polya_HowToSolveIt.pdf
Shaw, J. (n.d.). Sorting, classifying, and patterning: Critical to
mathematical understanding in kindergarten. Retrieved
https://www.eduplace.com/state/pdf/author/shaw2_hmm05.pdf
Siemon, D., Beswick, K., Brady, K., Clark, J., Faragher, R., & Warren, E.
(2011). Teaching mathematics: Foundations to Middle Years. South
Melbourne: Oxford University Press.
Sullivan, P. (n.d.). The potential of open-ended mathematics tasks for
overcoming barreirs to learning. Retrieved from
http://www.merga.net.au/documents/_Symposium_2Sullivan.pdf
Thompson, I. (n.d.). The principal counting principles. Retrieved from
https://www.ncetm.org.uk/public/files/712850/The+principal+coun
ting+principles.pdf
Watson, J, & Donne, J. (2009). TinkerPlots as a research tool to explore
student understanding. Retrieved from
http://escholarship.org/uc/item/8dp5t34t#page-1
Wong, M, & Evans, D. (2007). Students conceptual understanding of
equivalent fractions. Retrieved from
http://www.merga.net.au/documents/RP782007.pdf

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