Design for the Body in Mathematics Classrooms
In this paper, I explore what it might mean to take the body as the focus of design to support learning in mathematics classrooms, and more specifically, to support learning to work with graphs. I will provide an overview of the literature on embodied cognition, as a genre of research that challenge or reject the traditional view of cognitive science. The difference between these two paradigms provides a context for understanding the current research interest in the role of the body in mathematics and also for understanding implications for learning. Then, I review some research focusing specifically on the role of the body in mathematics. The third section, I briefly discuss what learning to work with graphs entails. In the last section, I will take a leap, and look at a scientific practice, protein crystallography, that appears to have interesting elements of body-work. An ethnographic account of the laboratory and pedagogical work of protein crystallographers becomes an anchor for me to think about designing for the body in mathematics classroom as I think about future steps.
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