Supporting Mathematical Discourse in the Early Grades

Full Description: 

This research brief discusses the benefits of teachers using mathematical discourse—allowing students to explain, justify, and debate their individual techniques for solving math problems—to enhance learning. Using this strategy requires educators to discard traditional teacher-centered modes of instruction and adopt new student-centered modes in which they facilitate discussion. The brief offers strategies for successful implementation, including modeling expected behavior, strengthening students’ mathematics vocabulary, selecting rich mathematical tasks that lend themselves to multiple solution strategies, allowing students to work in various groupings (pairs, groups), asking good questions, and giving students adequate time to respond.


Jennifer Stiles

Publication Date: 



6 pp.
first page of research brief