Effect of instruction on children’s strategies for solving addition problems
The study is premised on the fact that instead of designing instruction with the hope that all the children in the class would understand, teachers would be more effective if they tailor instruction to the developmental level of students in their classes. In this study, eight first- and second-graders whose level of development had been determined in an earlier study were instructed according to their individual levels of development for eight weeks. The teaching sessions, which were video recorded, were aimed at helping each child to reflect on his/her actions and to improve on his/her strategies under the encouragement and pressure of the researcher. Individual interviews conducted after the teaching sessions were also video-recorded and analyzed. The study revealed that when an instruction is tailored to a child’s level of cognitive development his/her strategies for solving addition problems and the ability to solve relatively more “complex” problems would both be improved. Recommendations based on the findings for teachers and for further research have been presented.
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