1. Gerald Kulm
  2. http://directory.cehd.tamu.edu/view.epl?nid=gkulm
  3. Senior Professor
  5. Texas A&M University
  1. Trina Davis
  2. http://people.cehd.tamu.edu/~tdavis/index.html
  3. Associate Professor
  5. Texas A&M University

KATE Project

NSF Awards: 1020132

2015 (see original presentation & discussion)


The Knowledge for Teaching Algebra for Equity (KATE) project enriches the education of preservice middle grades math teachers by using culturally relevant problem solving and Second Life simulations to provide early teaching experiences. The research is focused on a course that includes problem solving, readings and discussions on teaching for equity, and practice with addressing student misconceptions. Carefully planned and structured learning experiences for preservice teachers allow them to practice presenting and assessing algebra problem solving activities in a virtual classroom with diverse student avatars. Data were obtained over seven semesters using pre and posttests and interviews on beliefs about equity, algebra knowledge, and teaching knowledge. Preservice teachers were able to identify the characteristics of culturally relevant problems and make meaningful suggestions for improving algebra problems for their future middle grades students. There was significant growth in preservice teachers’ diversity awareness level after completing the course. Participants improved their abilities in identifying and dealing with students’ algebra misconceptions, however, many participants had difficulty in responding to simulated student questions that related to cultural issues. Second Life activities had a significant effect on pre-service teachers’ awareness of diversity.

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