don steward
mathematics teaching 10 ~ 16

Sunday, 21 November 2010

is there a geometric imperative?

there are many fascinating aspects to Dick Tahta's article in MT129 (Dec 1989)

he states his view that algebra and geometry are two sides of a mathematical coin

relating geometry to early childhood experience, he associates algebra with sound and geometry with sight

he highlights a near absence of considerations about 'space' in our current (UK) curriculum and says that geometry must needs study space, but that there are many spaces to explore!

his article considers aspects of various powers that young children mobilise under three headings:
imagining (seeing what is said)
construing (seeing what is drawn and saying what is seen) and
figuring (drawing what is seen)

for him, as for other commentators, geometry (especially working with images) has become a neglected area of the the UK curriculum

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