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Boxed into a corner: teaching definitions is a tricky business

Jones, Keith (2001) Boxed into a corner: teaching definitions is a tricky business Times Higher Educational Supplement, p.14.

Record type: Article


The (UK) National Numeracy Strategy includes the term 'oblong' in the framework for teaching mathematics to pupils aged 8 and over. This article takes issue with this specification. It argues that the term ‘oblong’ is not mathematical and that its use in mathematics lessons both makes it more difficult for pupils to appreciate that squares are rectangles and undermines the key idea of understanding generalisation in mathematics (when ‘weaker’ concepts are used to generalise towards 'stronger' concepts rather than exclude them).

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Published date: 19 January 2001
Keywords: pedagogy, curriculum, teaching, learning, definition, define, intuition, geometry, intuitive, drawing, measurement, imagining, manipulating, figures, mathematics, England, UK, geometric, geometrical, deductive reasoning, proof, school, national curriculum, Euclid, Euclidean
Organisations: Mathematics, Science & Health Education


Local EPrints ID: 41386
ISSN: 0049-3929
PURE UUID: 7cebc68d-3f3c-4e2d-806c-cfdd5bb493a8
ORCID for Keith Jones: ORCID iD

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Date deposited: 07 Sep 2006
Last modified: 17 Jul 2017 15:30

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