Middle school immigrant students developing mathematical reasoning in spanish and english

Rebecca Mc Graw, Eliane B Rubinstein-Avila

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

6 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Language is the means through which mathematics is learned and mathematical reasoning is developed and expressed. Students’ development of mathematical knowledge is dependent upon their codevelopment of language competencies. This study sought to understand the intersection of language acquisition and mathematical reasoning in a multigrade, dual-language mathematics classroom. The focal research question was: In what ways do immigrant middle-school students use L1 and L2 to communicate and to reason mathematically? The students who participated were first- and second-generation immigrants from Mexico. Data included (1) ethnographic field notes, (2), videotape and audiotape of small-group work, (3) interviews with the bilingual mathematics teacher, and (4) student work. Findings suggest that (1) nonroutine mathematical problem posing is useful for eliciting productive talk and encouraging reasoning; and (2) when given the opportunity, ELLs are likely to draw productively upon their linguistic resources in L1 and L2 to support high-level mathematical reasoning.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)147-173
Number of pages27
JournalBilingual Research Journal
Volume31
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 2009

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immigrant
mathematics
student
language
small group work
first generation
language acquisition
Mexico
linguistics
classroom
Immigrants
Middle School
teacher
interview
resources
Mathematics
Language

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education
  • Language and Linguistics
  • Linguistics and Language

Cite this

Middle school immigrant students developing mathematical reasoning in spanish and english. / Mc Graw, Rebecca; Rubinstein-Avila, Eliane B.

In: Bilingual Research Journal, Vol. 31, No. 1, 01.01.2009, p. 147-173.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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