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MATHEMATICS
A Curriculum Framework for Seventhday Adventist Secondary Schools
Mathematics
Curriculum Framework
Third Edition June 2000
ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS
The South Pacific Division Curriculum Unit has enlisted the help of a number of teachers in preparing this document. We would like to thank all who have contributed time, ideas, materials and support in many tangible and intangible ways. In particular, the following people have helped most directly in the writing and editing of this document:
First Edition 1990
Lyn Ashby Doonside Adventist High School
Mike Bartlett Carmel Adventist College
Chris Cowled Oakleigh Adventist School
Rae Doak Sydney Adventist High School
Allan Dalton Lilydale Adventist Academy
Gordon Howard Avondale Adventist High School
Karen Hughes Auckland Adventist High School
John Oxley Brisbane Adventist High School
Graeme Plane Murwillumbah Adventist High School
Alastair Stuart Longburn Adventist College
Steve Walker Carmel Adventist College
Stan Walshe Longburn Adventist College
Robert Wareham Nunawading Adventist High School
Roddy Wong Sydney Adventist High School
Second Edition 1999
Lyndon Chester Tweed Valley Adventist College
Malcolm Coulson North NSW Conference Education Director
Stephen Littlewood Border Christian College
Ralph Luchow Tweed Valley Adventist College
Craig Mattner Carmel Adventist College
Ray Minns Northpine Christian College
Wilfred Pinchin Avondale College
Robert Wareham Nunawading Adventist College
Third Edition 2000
Ray Minns Northpine Christian College
It is our wish that teachers will use this document to improve their teaching and so better attain the key objectives of Seventhday Adventist education.
Sincerely
Barry Hill
Director, Secondary Curriculum Unit
South Pacific Division, Seventhday Adventist Church
Department of Education
148 Fox Valley Road June 2000
WAHROONGA NSW 2076 Third Edition
Table of Contents
Acknowledgements . . . . . . . . . 3
table of Contents . . . . . . . . . 4
SECTION 1  INTRODUCTION . . . . . . . . 5
1.1 What is a Framework? . . . . . . . . . 6
1.2 Using the Framework . . . . . . . . . 7
section 2  philosophy .. . . . . . . . 8
2.1 A Philosophy of Education . . . . . . . . 9
2.2 Rationale . . . . . . . . . . . 10
2.3 Mathematics Objectives . . . . . . . . 11
section 3  planning a unit of work . . . . . 12
3.1 Steps in Planning Units and Lessons . . . . . . 13
3.2 Sample Units of Work  Probability . . . . . . 15
 Statistics . . . . . . . 16
section  4 planning elements . . . . . . . 17
4.1 Ideas for Teaching Mathematics in a Christian Context . . . 18
4.2 List of Mathematical Processes and Skills . . . . . 28
4.3 Detailed Objectives of Mathematics . . . . . . 29
4.4 Values and Concepts in Mathematics Topics . . . . . 32
4.5 Attitudes to Classwork . . . . . . . . . 40
4.6 Assessment . . . . . . . . . . 42
section 5  appendices . . . . . . . . 44
5.1 What are Values? . . . . . . . . 45
5.2 A Christian Approach to Values . . . . . . . 46
5.3 A Christian Approach to Teaching Mathematics . . . . 47
SECTION 1
Introduction
INDEX
1.1 What is a Framework? . . . . . 6
1.2 Using the Framework . . . . . 7
1.1 WHAT IS A FRAMEWORK?
A Framework
In the Adventist secondary school context, a framework is a statement of values and principles that guide curriculum development. These principles are derived from Adventist educational philosophy which states important ideas about what Seventhday Adventists consider to be real, true and good.
A framework is also a practical document intended to help teachers sequence and integrate the various elements of the planning process as they create a summary of a unit or topic.
The framework is not a syllabus.
The framework is not designed to do the job of a textbook. Although it contains lists of outcomes, values, and teaching ideas, the main emphasis is on relating values and faith to teaching topics and units.
Objectives of the Framework
One objective of the framework is to show how valuing, thinking and other learning skills can be taught from a Christian viewpoint. The Adventist philosophy of Mathematics influences this process.
A second objective is to provide some examples of how this can be done. The framework is therefore organised as a resource bank of ideas for subject planning. It provides ideas, issues, values and activities to teach these.
The framework has three target audiences:
All Mathematics teachers in Adventist secondary schools.
Principals and administrators in the Adventist educational system.
Government authorities who want to see that there is a distinctive Adventist curriculum emphasis.
1.2 USING THE FRAMEWORK
Before attempting to use this document for the first time, it is suggested that you read through this whole framework.
Notice that the framework is comprised of the following: explanation of a framework and its use, philosophy and objectives, suggestions on how to plan units of work, key planning elements, examples of topic plans, lists of important ideas, values, issues, teaching strategies, and other elements which are useful in building a planning summary.
These components are grouped into five sections. The nature and purpose of each section are set out below.
Section 1 introduction
Section one sets out the purpose of having a framework. It explains what a framework is and shows how to use it in a teachers program and on a regular basis to enhance ones teaching and make it more Christian oriented.
Section 2 philosophy
This is the philosophical section. It contains a philosophy statement, a rationale ( a statement of the value base for teaching mathematics), and a set of objectives which have a Christian bias.
This section is meant to help teachers refresh their memories of the Christian perspective they should teach from. They may consult this section when looking at longerterm curriculum planning, and when thinking about unit objectives. They may also consider the adapting it or using it to form part of their program of work.
Section 3 planning a unit of work
Section three is of the howto section of the framework. It explains procedures teachers can follow when planning an overall course, topic, or unit of work while thinking from a Christian perspective. It ends with sample units of work compiled after working through the steps. Because it suggests ideas for integrating knowledge, values and learning processes in teaching, this section is the heart of the document.
Section 4 planning elements
This section contains the various lists of ideas, values and teaching strategies that teachers may consult when working their way through Section three of the framework. It is a kind of mini dictionary of ideas to resource that steps followed in Section three.
Section 5 appendices
Section five contains ideas for teaching that may lie outside the immediate context of the classroom. It assists teachers in explaining in more detail some of the more specific ideas and approaches presented in this framework. It examines the meaning of values and how a Christian should approach values in mathematics, both of which are useful as reminders of good teaching and learning practice.
SECTION 2
Philosophy
INDEX
2.1 A Philosophy of Mathematics . . . . 9
2.2 Rationale . . . . . . . . 10
2.3 Mathematics Objectives . . . . . 11
2.1 A PHILOSOPHY OF MATHEMATICS
Everywhere in nature there are evidences of mathematical relationships. These are shown in ideas of number, form, design and symmetry, and in the constant laws governing the existence and harmonious working of all things. Through its study of these laws, ideas and processes, mathematics can reveal some of God's creative attributes, particularly His constancy.
Whereas the student cannot comprehend the absolute unchangeable nature of God, mathematical dependability demonstrates clearly the consistency of God and His perfect creation. This is a demonstration of total dependability.
Mathematics may also develop students' capacity to use appropriate thought processes to more clearly identify aspects of truth which relate to natural laws and design. Such truth is predictable, in that given a set of axioms and the appropriate mathematical processes, the result is always as expected. Therefore when students learn mathematical processes, axioms and laws, they may be further enabled to more clearly identify God's design and handiwork in nature.
While mathematics is a pure science, allowing many hypotheses and conjectures to be conclusively demonstrated as being either correct or incorrect, it also opens possibilities of knowledge that defies either proof or disproof. Examples are infinite smallness and infinite greatness. This unusual balance between the unexplained and the clearly evident provides the student with an accurate picture of an infinite and eternal God, whom we can neither prove nor disprove, yet in whom we believe. However, God has created rules and functions that can be demonstrated as an evidence of His presence.
As the language of the universe, mathematics helps show us how God is made manifest there. It expresses this part of Gods quality in its patterns of space and number that are partly aesthetic and spiritual. The spiritual dimension of mathematics transcends logic and reason. It asks ultimate questions, reveals the marvels of human imagination, presents amazing ideas, and changes the way we think about the world.
2.2 RATIONALE
There are many reasons why students should learn mathematics.
Firstly, they need to master basic mathematical skills in order to cope with the demands of life. Such demands include being numerically literate, gaining the tools for future employment, developing the prerequisites for further education, and appreciating the relationship between mathematics and technology.
Secondly, mathematics is the language of the sciences, and many disciplines depend on this subject as a symbolic means of communication.
Thirdly, a particularly important life skill is decisionmaking. Mathematics education can play an important part in developing students' general decisionmaking and problem solving skills.
A fourth justification for learning mathematics is the need for students to use the subject as an important means of discovering truth. The discipline clearly and precisely presents aspects of knowledge which are helpful in finding out truth about the structure and patterns of the environment, and of some of the ways in which God has communicated with man.
The fifth reason for studying mathematics is closely associated with the quest for truth. It is that mathematics assists our search for beauty. Students develop their aesthetic aptitudes by looking at patterns in nature and by appreciating the precision and symmetrical beauty in God's creation.
The sixth justification for mathematics is that it is an important aid in developing the creativity of the individual. Here the student has limitless opportunity to test his skills against the immutability of God's law. In a very real sense the student will develop confidence as he or she examines the consistency of law.
2.3 MATHEMATICS OBJECTIVES
The study of mathematics aims to enable students to:
Christian Worldview
Develop willingness to perceive the spiritual dimension in mathematics.
Develop an awareness that mathematical order and precision are characteristic of God the Creator.
Develop a growing knowledge of God's faithfulness and dependability through studying mathematics as a language of the universe.
Develop the ability to make links between mathematical concepts and other aspects of experience, whether these aspects are largely intellectual, practical or spiritual.
Develop the ability to identify values and make value judgments about mathematical ideas and quality.
Attitude to Mathematics
Perceive mathematics as a living art, one which is intellectually exciting, aesthetically satisfying, and relevant to applications which help meet life needs.
Develop a positive, adventurous attitude to learning mathematics, which includes enjoyment of learning.
Appreciate the value of calculating devices in mathematics.
Develop a positive set of emotional competencies through learning mathematics. Examples are selfdiscipline, selfconfidence, patience, and courage.
Learning of Mathematics
Use mathematics in coping with, controlling and determining factors which will influence their present and future environments.
maintain and increase their range of basic mathematical skills.
develop the ability to communicate using the symbolism and procedures of mathematics.
Develop competence in applying mathematics in a wide variety of life situations.
Develop the skills of logical thinking and presentation.
develop the synthesis skills of using techniques from different areas of mathematics to solve a problem.
develop skills in talking, listening, reading and writing about mathematics.
support other fields of study which make use of mathematical techniques.
SECTION 3
Planning a unit of work
3.1 Steps in Planning Units and Lessons . . . 13
3.2 Sample Units of Work  Probability . . . 15
 Statistics . . . 16
3.1 STEPS IN PLANNING UNITS AND LESSONS
When planning courses, units and lessons, there are some essential planning elements to keep in mind. Suggestions for going about the planning process are set out below.
On the following pages there are examples of how unit plans may appear in work programs.
A Overview
Read government requirements to find the syllabus requirements, content to cover, objectives, scope and sequence. These will be unique to each state, although there will be some degree of similarity in junior school with the recent moves towards a national core outcomesbased curriculum.
Fit the topics to the school calendar and weekly timetable to create units of work. Take into account public holidays, exam blocks, revision time for tests/exams, school camps, sporting days, school photos, competitions, known excursions, and any other form of known interruption. It is always best to gain the yearly picture to determine what can and cannot be covered for the teachers as well as the students sanity. Ensure topics are not rushed by allowing some extra time every so often. By doing this, unexpected events such as excursions can be compensated for and ones anxiety will be reduced.
B Composing a Topic
Gather information on the topic, including possible texts and resources. Contact your local Education Department, especially the subject Curriculum Development Officer. Ring other schools in your district and talk to teachers in your subject area. Most teachers are more than willing to help.
Refer to Section 4 for outcomes in each of the four areas of knowledge, skills, higher processes, and values that you could incorporate into your unit of work. Section 3.2 has sample units of work. Try to compose your unit of work from a Christian framework.
Start to think about the main assessment tasks of the unit. Think beyond the standard test. Try to cater for individual differences in assignment. In Section 4.5 you will find a range of ideas.
Break the information into lessons with appropriate time for the elements to be covered each lesson. Allow time for activities (in or out of the classroom), for possible research or computer time, and for revision.
Sequence the lessons with appropriate links between them.
C Individual Lessons
List the most important outcomes. Knowledge outcomes include content, and the concepts and worldview of mathematics. Skills outcomes describe abilities that follow knowledge and practice. Higher Processes include elements of processes such as inquiry, problem solving and data processing. Values are of many kinds. See .those in Section 4.1. Some are teachable more directly and others are taught less directly by exposure and experience. Some are assessable, and some are not.
Determine how these outcomes (knowledge, skills, higher processes, values) will be achieved.
Devise interesting teaching strategies and look for supporting resources.
Create and refine teaching notes.
D Post Lesson Planning
Evaluate during and after teaching. Make notes where you can improve for next time.
Modify future teaching.
3.2 SAMPLE UNITS OF WORK
YEAR 10 THE ODDS ARE AGAINST YOU (PROBABILITY)
Time: Four fortyfive minute periods
Outcomes
Content SequencePossible ActivitiesPossible AssessmentKnowledge
Recall the concept of odds
Recall terms associated with probability
Define probability
Skills
Calculate odds
Demonstrate the probability of success/failure using odds
Construct tree diagrams
Accurately perform probability calculations using a calculator where appropriate
Higher Processes
Calculate the probability of compound events
Translate written problems into mathematical symbols
Solved problems involving probability
Values/Ideas
Apply knowledge skills to show the futility of gambling
Show awareness of the importance of good stewardship
Avoid taking unreasonable risks which make chance the basis of conduct
Introduction: Christian view of probability and gambling
Revision of probability terms:
trial, experiment, outcome, probability, relative frequency, sample space, random experiment, certain event
Definition of probability
Calculation of probability
Definition and calculation of odds
Converting the probability of success into odds
Calculating the probability of compound events
Drawing tree diagrams
Revision
Rolling a die/dice a number of times
Spinning tops
Drawing cards from a pack
Drawing marbles from a bag
Probability project on odds
Unit test
YEAR 10 STATISTICS
Time: 12 fortyfive minute periods
Outcomes
ContentPossible ActivitiesPossible AssessmentKnowledge
Explain the meaning of terms used:
Describe the scope of the use of statistics as set out in the unit
Skills
Sample a population to make estimates
Graph statistical data
Show frequency distribution
Calculate mean, median, mode
Calculate standard deviation
Predict using statistics
Higher Processes
Process complex data
Use statistics to critically evaluate information
Think about the truth or merit of statistical information
Communicate statistical trends
Inquire about statistical validity and truth
Make intelligent decisions using statistics
Values/Ideas
Make wise choice when using statistics
Verify statistics to clear up wrong perceptions
Critically evaluate statistics
Understand the place of individuals in calculating means
Skills
Sampling
Graphing
Frequency distribution
Mean, median, mode
Standard deviation
Use of statistics in everyday life
Processes:
Data processing
Calculation
Thinking
Communication
Inquiry
Values:
Honesty in using figures, quotes and calculations
Truthful presentation
Positive acceptance of the reality of statistics
Caution in prediction
Wisdom in decisionmaking
Survey how choices are made
Illustrate how statistics can be used to clear up misperceptions of products
Graph examples of misleading statistics to show reality
Graph and compare statistics on a quit now program and a tobacco advertising program Work sheet to show how taking mean, median and mode can lead to a different interpretation of statistics and incorrect decisions
Use a bell curve to illustrate the idea that on any issue we should expect extremes, and a range of behaviours and beliefs
Relate uniqueness to extremes, bell curves and peer pressure
Presentation of survey data
One graphing assignment
Unit test
SECTION 4
Planning elements
4.1 Ideas for Teaching Mathematics in a
Christian Context . . . . . . . 18
A Teach the Idea of Quality . . . . . 18
B Teach Values types, tactics . . . . 18
C Teach About Wonder and Spirit . . . 20
D Make Links Between Maths Concepts,
Experience and the Christian Worldview . 20
E Use Biographies to Teach Values, Concepts
And Wonder . . . . . . . . 21
4.2 Lists of Mathematical Processes and Skills . 28
4.3 Detailed Objectives of Mathematics . . . 29
4.4 Values and Concepts in Mathematics Topics . 32
4.5 Attitudes to Classwork . . . . . . 40
4.6 Assessment . . . . . . . . . 42
4.1 IDEAS FOR TEACHING MATHEMATICS IN A CHRISTIAN CONTEXT
A Teach the Idea of Quality
Remembering that Gods quality is the foundation of Christian reality, teachers can cmphasise the idea that mathematics teaches particular aspects of this quality. This helps bring together the Christian and mathematical worldviews.
Consider the following ideas about how mathematics expresses the quality inherent in the space and numbers of the universe.
Mathematics is the science of space and number. Space and number have important value in themselves, and help create the quality of our life.
Mathematics is a language that describes the properties of the universe. Through it we better understand the quality and reality of the created universe.
Mathematics is a numerical pattern of values.
Mathematics requires rigorous thinking about number, axioms, laws etc. This is a kind of intellectual quality.
Mathematics helps us understand and use science and technology. These in turn add quality to daily life.
Aesthetic quality is shown in number patterns.
Mathematics gives us quality of understanding about the world a clearer world view
B Teach Values
1. Types of Values
Types of values that are derived from the reality of Mathematics are listed below. Although the values are categorised in a particular group, many could be placed in several categories.
Aesthetic Values
Appreciation of a Designer
Awe of the imagination beauty and power of mathematics
Balance in mathematical properties and design
Economy of design in nature
Elegance of a solution
Harmony in design and beauty
Mathematical harmony in music
Order of numerical patterns and working
Sense of beauty
Application to Life Values
Ability to apply mathematics  in managing money, going shopping, calculating dimensions of things etc
Appreciation of the practicality of mathematics
Creativity Values
Ability to design
Ability to see and create problems
Flexibility
Originality in solving problems
Emotional Values
Desire to develop ones ability
Perseverance
Positive attitude to mathematics
Positive sense of selfworth
Positive use of difficulty and failure
Intellectual Values
Ability to arrange priorities
Ability to make good choices and decisions
Acceptance of paradox
Accuracy
Application ability
Appreciation of inquiry in learning
Awareness of choices and their consequences
Awareness of the potential of mathematics
Care in work
Caution in interpretation of data
Clarity of reasoning process
Disciplined memory
Disposition to learn from mistakes
Disposition to search
Economy of working method
Economy in use of resources
Logic
Open mindedness
Perspective of the certainty of mathematical ideas and laws
Predictability of mathematical laws
Progressiveness
Responsibility for quality
Stewardship of resources, time and effort
Verification of procedures and results
Social Values
Appreciation of human mind and imagination
Appreciation of the inner logic of mathematics
Awe of the power and beauty of mathematics
Disposition to find evidences for God
Interest in asking ultimate questions such as what is finite and infinite?
Reference to ethical principles
Wonder about properties of space and number
Section 4.3 lists many mathematical topics and identifies values that could be communicated in those topics.
2. Tactics for Teaching Values
Identify values involved in problems and examples. An example is the value of stewardship which is careful budgeting, and the responsible use of funds through credit cards etc. When we are teaching aspects of how mathematics affects consumers, we may emphasise the importance of stewardship.
The making of choices and decisions is an important part of valuing. We can emphasise the idea that mathematics involves many decisionmaking situations. For example students make choices about the best procedures to solve problems. We may refer to the consequences of making such decisions, and ways of verifying that these consequences will occur.
An extension of Point 2 is to teach the idea that in mathematics we make value judgements about the worth of problem solutions or procedures we use. In this kind of situation we are focusing on quality in our working procedures. This kind of quality is also linked to intellectual values such as accuracy and clear logic
Look for opportunities to teach values in appropriate topics. An example of a valuesoriented topic is how mathematics influences beauty and design in nature.
Consciously model what it is to be a mathematician of quality. Such modeling includes personal ethics, the approach to doing mathematics, and social interaction.
Teach attitudes to being a good scholar in classroom procedures and interaction.
C Teach About Wonder and Spirit
Mathematics is more than reason. Like many other forms of knowledge, it has a spiritual dimension. Teachers can start to point students to this dimension by using opportunities to mention aspects of mathematics that are potentially spiritual in nature. Examples:
Mathematics reveals remarkable feats of human imagination that go beyond common sense and immediate reality. This means they can transcend in one kind of spiritual sense.
Mathematics is deeply human because it shows the marvels of the human mind in operation. Our humanity is itself a thing of awe.
Mathematics is spiritual because it asks ultimate questions such as what is finite and infinite?
Mathematics is a thing of wonder because it is essentially the language of the universe.
Mathematics is astonishing because it presents amazing ideas such as negative numbers.
Mathematics is majestic and powerful because it has an inner logic that looks as if a single intellect is in operation when developing mathematics, when in fact there are many.
There is spiritual quality in human awe and wonder about properties of space and number.
D Make Links between Maths Concepts, Experience and the Christian Worldview
Teachers can make links between the concepts of mathematics and aspects of experience. Major mathematical concepts include infinity, equality, and uncertainty.
Linkages can be made by using analogies, parallels, comparisons and object lessons. The following examples illustrates this strategy.
One concept is infinity. The idea of infinity is a concept, not a number. It is something that has no limits, and which is unbounded or unreachable. The unknown infinite nothings of mathematics are turned into something through calculus. One example from the natural world is the idea of cosmos.
Another concept is balance. Solving equations always requires them to be balanced. An unbalanced or messy sequence ends in the wrong answer. In reference to life, imbalance can result in an unhealthy lifestyle. Also, a satisfying Christian life always requires a balance.
A question format can help this linkage process. An example of using a question is:
Is infinity a concept or a number?
In what ways is infinity a metaphor for your concept of God?
It is important to recognise that some links in this process are inherent and others analog. To illustrate, the concept of logarithms models the way we respond to the intensity of sounds. This is an inherent link between mathematics and experience.
By contrast there is an issue of Christmas being abbreviated as Xmas. We may think about the idea that the X in Xmas can be seen as an unknown like an x in an equation. To use an indirect analog link, we could say that Christmas has changed its focus, no longer with the focus being on Christ, so that it has also become an unknown.
The aim in this kind of process in this framework is to provide teachers with ideas, yet at the same time to avoid derision for being simplistic or too ambitious. It is important not to claim too much when making links between the mathematical worldview and the Christian worldview.
The next six pages give more inherent and indirect links between ideas and values of mathematics, and the Christian worldview.
E Make Links between Values and Christian Worldview
This section of the framework attempts to show how teachers can make links between mathematical concepts and values and ideas that are found in lifes experience, and that are often outside mathematical study. Some of the key concepts of mathematics are set out below in table form to align each concept with its possible applications.
Concepts
Applications
Absolute Value
Absolute Value
Inherent Link
Indirect Links
God is absolute
God turns negatives into positives
Quadratics frowns can be turned into smiles
Comparisons
Equations and inequations
Balance
Opposites
Greater than and less than
Inverses
Real and unreal
Terminating and nonterminating decimals
Digital and analog
Inherent Links
Discrimination involves comparison
Conservation laws and their limits (mass/energy) show boundaries between variables and invite comparison
Value equivalence rather than appearance may better express identical properties
Indirect Links
Good and evil can compare with infinite and finite
Real and unreal can compare with love and hate
Truth and error are opposites
Conditional equality can depend on circumstances
Value Gods idea of value is different from ours
Comparison between the transition from OT and NT and progress in personal development
ConceptsApplicationsData
Qualitative and quantitative
Statistical procedures
Sampling
Graphs
Numbers
Organisation
Estimation
Simulation
Statistical measures
Normal curve
Inherent Links
Each piece of information has equal significance
Honesty in representation of data is important
Indirect Links
One person as a single entity can make a difference
Life on this earth is only a sample of the real Christian life still to come
Infinity
Has no limits, unbounded, unreachable
A concept, not a number
Can refer to number lines (big, or small)
The unknown
Related concepts fractions, decimals, asymptotes
Inherent Links
Infinite nothings are turned into something from calculus
One example from the natural world is the idea of cosmos
Indirect Links
Infinite can be inside finite. An example is incarnation (a finite God in a finite body)
It is one of the different metaphors for God
It can relate to Gods beginning or end
It does not reduce God but increases understanding of him
It can express time and the relationship to God
ConceptsApplicationsLogic
Way of thinking and doing
Order of operations
Provides linkage between ideas (eg reasoning/setting out)
Undergirds laws of Mathematics
Depends on suppositions and assumptions
Includes proofs and induction
Has conventions
Grouping of lie terms
Inherent Links
Logic shows the juxtaposition of design and chance
Logic expresses conventions versus absolutes
Fairness relates to logic
Indirect Links
There is choice in logic as in salvation
There are arbitrary human limits to logical limits
The brain has a selforganising function relating to logic
The brain has a selforganising function relating to logic
There is logic in consequences for choices
The conditionally for salvation is not logical
ConceptsApplicationsMeasurement
Time
Space length / area / volume
Mass and weight
Pi
Angles
Trigonometry
Speed/acceleration
Estimation
Measurement systems
Reference points
Logarithms
Use of aids like calculators and rulers and instruments
Limits of accuracy
Inherent Links
Relativity is a kind of measurement perspective
There is relationship between linear time and space
Judging involves measuring things like scales and reference points
Indirect Links
Short time gaps such as in Gods travelling (eg Gabriel and Daniel) are amazing
Concept of spiritual warfare has certain kinds of dimensions
Time is ever new, involving decisions and ramifications
Omnipresence cannot be measured
God not limited by time and space
Prayer how does God cope with the immeasurable?
Limited or choice? Destiny predetermined, measured, God measures Christ rather than us
Prophecy and time are related measures
Perfection seems immeasurable
The relation between design skill and extent of experience is measurable
Age of the earth is hard to measure
Bible study is an aid to measurement
Number Systems
Natural
Rational
Irrational
Real
Imaginary and complex numbers
Number bases
Images
Zero
Binary
Decimals and place value
Fractions
Sets and subsets
Inherent Links
Going through operations without understanding does not use the potential of number systems
Every set is a subset of something bigger
Imaginary numbers have a physical reality
Indirect Links
Small discoveries such as number have made large differences in our lives
No persons should feel insignificant because small things like numbers are not
God is the universal set
Timebased cycles of day, year, month are defined in nature, but where did the week come from?
Once a person accepts Christ, experiences become real (like or unlike a number system?)
ConceptsApplicationsPatterns
Sequences Fibbonacci; GPs and Aps
Fractals
Tessellations
Aesthetics
Design and design process
Spirals
Repetitions
Modeling
Symmetry
Inherent Links
Examples of patterns: exponential growth and decay; normal distribution; patterns in mathematical functions and their graphs
Harmony, beauty, symmetry and patterns abound
Patterns of mathematics are numerical value patterns
Indirect Links
The intrinsic value of mathematics is shown by its practical value to people
Design implies a designer
Proofs
Different types of proofs contradiction; induction; direct
Evidence and example
Axioms and theorems
Inherent Links
Evidence can be internal, not necessarily external
The lack of a proof does not mean that something does not exist
Indirect Links
Contrast of evidence and proof is required to allow room for faith
God chose to work with evidence, not proof
Proof by Mattner re conversation with God still have to accept him at his word
Proportions
Ratios
Aesthetics
Design
Dimensions
Direct/indirect variation
Inverse variation
Fractions and percentages
Inherent Links
Aesthetics, the sense of the beautiful contains proportions
Present in design in nature such as in the Fibbonacci series
Inverse square laws show proportion
Indirect Links
Creativity depends on design and variation
Human perception is not necessarily accurateSimilarity/Congruence
Similarity
Equivalence
Reasons for congruence
Grouping of like objects
Inherent Links
Indirect Links
Mans likeness to God
Race, language, and philosophy have congruence
There is congruence between mathematics and world view
ConceptsApplicationsTransformations
Translation
Rotation
Reflection
Symmetry
Enlargement
Shear
Matrices and vectors
Objects and images
Inherent Links
Indirect Links
Transformation of a life parallels mathematical transformations
Reflection of Christ a transformation
Incarnation is a transformation
Perception can involve transformation
Turning a life around conversion is transformation
God is required for direction, enlargement, translation in life
Uncertainty and probability
Chaos
Chance
Sequences
Complement
Confidence intervals
Predictability
Margins of errors
Odds
Binomial Theorem
Probabilities of zero and one
Dependent and independent events
Qualitative and quantitative
Inherent Links
Decisionmaking draws on probability
Indirect Links
Beliefs about life views involve probability
Certainty of beliefs such as about religious salvation relate to probability
Creation and evolution debate the probability of one kind of beginning over another
Gambling with probability involves stewardship
Gods existence has probability
Gods involvement in things that seem to have no rhyme or reasons expresses uncertainty or probability
Parable of the sheep and the goats expresses probability
Pascals Theorem weighs up the probability of God
Success or failure are the only two probability options in some aspects of life
Variables
Express abstract quantity
Representations of something else
Provide the ability to generalise
Subject to laws and boundaries
Inherent Links
Variables express an unknown quality
Variables help us derive an understanding or appreciation for something initially not known
Indirect Links
The abbreviation Xmas rather than Christmas shows representation of the spiritual unknown in the actual event
Christs representatives on earth are variables
We are subject to natural laws like variables are
F Use Biographies to Teach Values, Concepts and Wonder
The lives of mathematicians provide opportunities to teach values. Consider the following example of how biography can be used to introduce values and worldview ideas.
The issue of how we gain certainty about what is real raises the question of what really lies at the heart of maths. For example Robert Pirsig has explained how the Frenchman Poincare changed his ideas about the nature of maths. He was puzzled by Euclids fifth postulate that said that through a given point theres not more than one parallel line to a given straight line. He saw that Lobachevski had refuted this postulate as impossible and set up his own geometry which was as good as Euclids. Then he noted that Riemann appeared with another unshakable system which differed from both Euclid and Lobachevski. An aha experience happened when contrary to his previous thinking he realised that his system of mathematical functions called the ThetaFuchsion Series was identical with nonEuclidian geometry.
Poincare concluded that the axioms of geometry are simply conventions and not proven facts. We choose among them to obtain what suits us if it is advantageous to us. Even concepts such as space and time are only changeable definitions chosen on the basis of their convenience.
He then struggled with questions like what are the most important facts? and how de we choose the best facts? In the end he decided that mathematical solutions are selected by the subliminal self on the basis of mathematical beauty of the numbers and forms, of geometric elegance. He said this is a true aesthetic feeling which all mathematicians know but it is this harmony, this beauty that is at the centre of it all (Pirsig 1974, 270).
Bibliography. Pirsig, Robert. 1974. Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance. Viking.
4.2 MATHEMATICAL PROCESSES AND SKILLS
Set out below are a number of processes and skills that could be taught in secondary mathematics courses. The list is not exhaustive, and is meant to help teachers see at a glance a profile of skills that a student would try to develop over time.
ProcessesGeneralApproximationApplicationCalculationConstructingCommunicationDrawingData processingGraphingDecisionmakingManipulatingEstimationMeasuringExplorationRisk takingInquiryUsing computersProblem solvingThinkingInquiryInvestigatingSkillsListingMultiple referencesCalculationSeeking patternsPerforming calculationsSubstitutingProblem SolvingUsing a calculatorAnalyzing informationVerifying resultsLooking aheadLooking backCommunicationProblem discoveryComparingSeeking informationComprehendingSynthesizingDescribingExplainingSocialFollowing instructionsAccepting responsibilityNeatnessContributingRepresentingFollowing directionsSetting outInitiativeSketchingListeningTerminologyPerseveringWriting skillsToleranceData ProcessingThinkingClassifyingAbstractingCollatingAnalysingCollecting dataClassifyingOrganizing informationComparingPresentingDeducingRecordingGeneralizingSummarizingInferringSynthesizingValidatingMental arithmeticPatterningPlotting
4.3 OUTCOMES OF MATHEMATICS
KNOWLEDGE
Students should be able to:
1. Recall mathematical facts;
2. Understand and use mathematical terminology;
3. Understand mathematical concepts and relationships;
4. Understand the historical contribution of mathematics to society;
5. Know relevant formulae, equations, rules and theorems and their proofs when appropriate;
6. Know relevant procedures and techniques such as the method of proof by induction;
7. Recall basic shapes of the graphs of the functions and relations used;
8. Understand where mathematics is used in real life.
LARGER PROCESSES
Students should be able to:
1. Access the appropriateness of a particular strategy in solving a problem;
2. Identify and execute the discrete steps necessary to solve a range of practical problems;
3. Translate realistic written and oral problems into mathematical symbols and vice versa;
4. Draw and attempt to justify conclusions or hypothesis in relation to sets of data;
5. Make informed decisions based on a mathematical evaluation of various options;
6. Access the accuracy of results in relation to a given context;
7. Analyse and interpret data;
8. Discover generalisations and express them mathematically.
SKILLS
Calculation
Students should be able to:
1. Develop manipulative and computational skills;
2. Accurately perform calculations, using a calculator where appropriate;
3. Read information expressed in mathematical words and symbols;
4. Substitute in appropriate formulae;
5. Verify the suitability and reasonableness of a result.
Data Processing
Students should be able to:
1. Acquire skills in collecting data from a variety of sources;
2. Develop skills in organising information
3. Practise practical methods of summarising and presenting data;
4. Show facility in drawing graphs and diagrams;
5. Develop systematic ways of recording information.
Inquiry
Students should be able to:
Develop investigation and inquiry skills;
Acquire skills in using multiple references, and reading widely but selectively;
Develop oral and written communication skills, including the ability to use precise terminology;
Manipulate concrete materials, mathematical instruments and measuring devices;
Develop initiating strategies  seeking patterns, constructing tables, listing.
Thinking
Students should be able to:
Translate realistic written and oral problems into mathematical symbols and vice versa;
Make informed decisions based on a mathematical evaluation of various options;
Understand the nature and role of inductive and deductive reasoning and proof, and reason inductively and deductively;
Apply suitable mathematical techniques and problem solving strategies to routine and nonroutine situations.
Communication
Students should be able to:
1. Demonstrate basic writing skills;
2. Present work with appropriate setting out and neatness;
3. Clearly understand instructions and follow them.
Social
Students should be able to:
Accept responsibility for their own actions;
Follow directions;
Listen and be tolerant of others' views;
Contribute to group discussion and activities;
Start work without prompting.
Interact in a cooperative manner with peers and teachers.
Emotional
Students should be able to:
Develop selfconfidence in handling mathematics;
Persevere when problems arise;
Develop a desire to develop their ability
Develop a positive sense of selfworth
Be able to make positive use of difficulty and failure
ATTITUDE TO LEARNING MATHEMATICS
Students should be able to:
Develop an appreciation of the value of mathematics in society, and apply this appreciation in their everyday contexts;
Be willing to experiment mathematically in unfamiliar situations;
Show a willingness to participate in the learning of mathematics;
Strive for a neat, orderly and logical presentation;
Positively affirm mathematics as being intellectually exciting.
4.4 VALUES AND CONCEPTS IN MATHEMATICS TOPICS
This section of the framework extends Section 4.1 Part E. It is designed to give teachers ideas about how concepts and values could be identified and communicated in particular mathematics topics. The values are arranged alphabetically in each topic.
Algebra
Awareness of Consequences:
Indirect link in equations the value that one substitutes for x results in certain consequences. Indirect link this illustrates the influence of cause and effect in life.
Awareness of Potential:
Indirect link as in asymptotes, we may become closer and closer to Christ in likeness but never touch Him. Our relationship and potential to grow is continuous and infinite.
Balance:
Inherent link solving equations always requires them to be balanced. An unbalanced or messy sequence ends in the wrong answer.
Indirect link a satisfying Christian life always requires a balance.
Caution:
Indirect link test the solution of an equation to see if it works. Test things in life to see if they are worthwhile.
Certainty:
Inherent link decisionmaking draws on probability
Indirect link Success or failure are the only two probability options in some aspects of life
Choice:
Inherent link choice is an important part of mathematical reasoning. For example, we plot lines by choosing values for x and y. We choose between values such as speed and completing the task in detail or with accuracy.
Indirect links many of our choices carry consequences, and we must learn what these are. The analogy holds for many life situations as well.
Development:
Inherent link an example is that although the positive gradient of functions may vary, all are upwards.
Learning from mistakes:
Inherent link if you make a mistake, try to decide what went wrong and do not make the same mistake next time.
Order:
Inherent link sometimes things need to be reordered and sorted out to be useful. Formulae are based on order.
Indirect link the transposition of equations is like the Christian life, for in life we cannot always see the immediate purpose in something.
Positive peer selection:
Indirect link simplifying by collecting like terms has a parallel with collecting types of peer friends in life.
Positiveness:
Indirect link when multiplying negative numbers, two negatives give a positive. God turns both positive and negative experiences into positive ones.
Arithmetic
Accuracy:
Inherent link accuracy implies economy because when we are accurate wastage is minimized. We should strive for care and neatness.
Awe:
Indirect link counting numbers as an infinite set, as God is an infinite being.
Economy:
Inherent links mathematics should encourage efficient use of resources such as time, effort, space, materials. Economy includes efficiency in producing results. Clarity of expression is part of economy. Choosing the most effective alternative, involves values such as simplicity, conciseness, and clarity.
Informed decisionmaking
Inherent link when making choices, the greater the knowledge, the wiser the decision that can be made. Knowledge is founded on basic skills.
Logic:
Indirect link note the venn diagram below on how knowledge relates to the existence of God:
The diagram shows that knowledge of the existence of God may exist outside individual knowledge.
Order of numbers:
Inherent link this can be shown for example in: magic squares, number patterns, Pascals triangle. Numbers and operations are ordered and wrong answers result if order is wrong.
Place:
Indirect link in mathematics, numbers have value according to their place (eg the 7 in 372 is worth 70). So in life, many things have value because of their place place assigns value. We profit from knowing our rightful or appropriate place in many life situations.
Selfworth:
Indirect link this can be shown by place value. For example the value of a digit is determined by its position in relation to the decimal point. We can let God put the decimal point in our life.
Calculus
Economy of Resources:
Inherent link this can be illustrated by using maximum and minimum values to calculate minimum material needed for maximum volume etc.
Following instructions:
Inherent link following instructions is being willing to follow set guidelines and rules.
Inquiry:
Inherent link explores limits, and considers the infinite and the finite.
Logic in Reasoning:
Inherent links deductive and inductive reasoning are based on logic.
The results of logic are only as dependable as the truth of the original premise.
Two types of reasoning are deductive and inductive:
Mind Expansion:
Inherent link calculus can be a tool available to attempt problems not solved by previous knowledge.
Positive Use of Difficulty and Failure:
Indirect link an example of this trait is as follows. The turning point in a graph occurs when f1(x) = 0, so often the turning point in life occurs when we reach our lowest point.
Reference To Principles:
Inherent link Reference to principles is our derivation of why we do what we do. In calculus we use first principles to explain why we follow a set method, then we just keep using that method knowing in the back of the mind why.
Indirect link even though we do not always think every action through every time we act, we need to be aware of the basic original reason for doing what we do.
Consumer Arithmetic
Arranging Priorities:
Inherent link money is not everything. We should be able to put money into its true perspective.
Economy:
Inherent link economy refers to the ability to calculate values for wise spending and investing.
Responsibility:
Inherent link responsibility refers to living within your means.
Sharing:
Inherent link we should develop the concept of planning to be able to help other people. We should not keep everything to ourselves.
Stewardship:
Inherent link is budgeting, and responsible usage of funds (credit cards etc). The mathematics of consumerism often stresses the importance of stewardship when making decisions about purchasing goods. For example, students can be shown the importance of comparing prices and looking for the best buy.
Verification:
Inherent link Verification is the ability to put something to the test, and to check its real value.
Wise Choice:
Inherent link wise choice is the ability to make informed intelligent decisions about spending.
Worth:
Inherent link worth demonstrates the value of mathematics in its practical application to living, hence its practical value. Mathematics helps us to live as a more useful citizen in our society.
Geometry
Acceptance of Paradox:
Indirect link a point is not really a point but a representation of a point. This concept is still very useful and important, and parallels our incomplete understanding of God.
Appreciation of a Designer:
Indirect link in engineering the strongest shape is a circle like the trunk of the tree. The tree, designed by God is everywhere in nature.
Design economy:
Inherent link the mathematics of the honeycomb shows the economy of design. Economy produces the greatest strength and volume from the smallest amount of material.
Logic:
Indirect link by deductive reasoning and through observation of the world we can deduce a creators hand.
Reasoning Process:
Indirect link design in nature (logarithmic spiral of nautilus shell or honeycomb) can be used to support the argument for the existence of a Designer.
Utility of Pattern:
Inherent link the usefulness of pattern is illustrated as follows:
Mathematics expresses the concept of pattern in nature.
There is a high degree of dependability of pattern in nature.
Pattern is a tool for observation, and a tool for analysis.
Pattern is a means for prediction.
Geometrical patterns are the building blocks for both technology and beauty.
Number patterns are the basis of mathematical theories.
Pattern in statistics enables prediction and forecast with a high level of dependability.
Probability is sometimes observation of pattern.
Measurement
Accuracy:
Inherent links accuracy is something we should always strive for. The limits to accuracy of results are dependent on the limits of the original measurements. We must recognize types of errors. Two types are: avoidable which include systematic errors such as parallel, transcription errors; and unavoidable which depend on factors such as the level of accuracy of measuring instruments. We may strive for accuracy, but we should recognize its limits.
Choice:
Inherent link choice is using correct and reasonable units of measurement, and a suitable level of accuracy for different situations.
Disciplined Memory:
Inherent link formulae must be learned. It takes effort to learn some things.
Economy
Inherent link economy is being able to calculate requirements that are needed, and to save wastage.
Finding God
Indirect link as with measurement where we do not need one hundred percent accuracy for it to work, we do not need to understand everything about God for Him to work for us.
Open mindedness
Inherent link we should not take the first or most obvious measurement for granted, but we should consider other possibilities before starting our problem solving.
Practicality:
Inherent link there is a practical use in measurement, yet there is not one hundred percent certainty or accuracy. Measurement is not absolute, but is only accurate to a certain point.
Verification
Inherent link verification is being able to measure for yourself, to double check and save being ripped off.
Worth Practical
Inherent link measurement can demonstrate a practical application of maths, and shows that maths has practical value.
Probability
Logic:
Inherent link give gradations in examples of probability such as one in ten, one in fifty, one in a hundred, one in four million, and mention the probability of winning something like Tatts Lotto.
Indirect link As an example of probability, there are too many factors and combinations of factors to make evolution probable.
Perceptiveness:
Inherent link independent events do not necessarily affect each other. Superstitious people believe events are connected when they really are not. Psychological and supernatural factors can alter this relationship.
Personal responsibility:
Inherent link probability says there is only likelihood, not a certainty. An example is death by cancer. Probability does not control or determine actual outcomes. It concerns groups not individuals. The larger the group, the more likelihood of the laws of probability operating. People get a false sense of security with probability. An example is when they consider car accidents or death by lung cancer.
Personal responsibility:
Indirect link emphasize that life is not random, so personal responsibility is needed to make the world better.
Progressiveness:
Indirect link it is possible to escape from probability. An example of an escape is some person who has made a socioeconomic escape through personal development to escape probability.
Stewardship:
Inherent link explain why gambling is not productive there is a gap between initiative and mathematical probability. There is need for careful spending on insurance which is based on probability. For example a nondrinker, nonsmoker has cheaper insurance in companies such as ANSVAR. House insurance premiums are determined by location according to crime areas.
Wise choice:
Indirect link wise choice affects the outcome, whether this is mathematical or related to life. With salvation there are two outcomes saved or not saved. Emphasize that by choice you can increase the probability of something happening.
Problem Solving Ability
The skill of problem solving is related to many mathematical values. Examples include the following:
Acceptance of value tension:
Inherent link when solving problems, we have to keep in mind competing values. Examples are speed of operation versus task completion.
Anticipation:
Inherent link to find minimum and maximum values when solving some problems, foresight is required. Anticipation pays dividends.
Awareness of parameters:
Inherent link problem solutions often fall into certain parameters (for example time and cost). All the parameters have to be kept in mind constantly.
Indirect link when making decisions in life, it is also necessary to juggle parameters.
Care in technique:
Inherent link when solving problems, the technique is often as important as the answer. It can be important to carefully record the way we solve problems for future reference.
Careful problem formulation:
Inherent link problems in mathematics often occur simply because of the way the examples are formulated.
Indirect link the same holds for lifes problems. The way we state or see something can itself be the problem.
Creativity:
Inherent link we use different approaches to solve problems. We develop different "proofs" for mathematical theorems.
Order:
Inherent link algorithms have a basis in order.
Sequence and Series
Acceptance of Paradox:
Indirect link there are paradoxes in design. So in life apparent contradictions can be working together in a large scheme.
Aesthetic appeal :
Inherent link golden ratios are pleasing to the eye.
Dependability:
Inherent link the value of dependability is shown in a sequence.
Economy of design:
Indirect link Fibonacci Series occurs often in nature eg. 1, 1, 2, 3, 5, 8 etc, suggesting an intelligent source for number patterns:
found in pine cones, sunflower, pineapples.
it also indicates one source and mind rather than mere matter.
relates to Pascals triangle, again reinforces the same thread of there being a pattern or design. this indicates economy of design.
Flexibility:
Inherent link in sequences certain steps need not be reversed, while others must be able to be reversed. For example, the statement if and only if is one that is true as it reads, and also in reverse.
Indirect link In life, some things are reversible, but some are not. We need to know the difference.
Order:
Inherent link sequences and series are orderly. Mathematics is a system that reflects order. Mathematical modeling works on the assumption that nature is orderly.
Predictability:
Inherent link predictability comes from working out formulae from patterns. This process relates to making intelligent choices.
Indirect link predictability can be a support for design and a designer.
Trigonometry
Awe:
Indirect link Awe is a sense of wonder through a look at the infinite. We can use tan graphs to help achieve awe.
Care:
Inherent link care is diligence in assessing, interpreting and analysing the information given to start with.
Choice:
Inherent link choice is selecting the correct ratio in the process of obtaining a correct result.
Courage:
Indirect link courage means willingness to experiment, to make a start even if you cannot see the end from the beginning.
Disposition to search:
Inherent link there is no end to knowledge. For example, after angle sum and pythagoras, there is still more.
Investigation:
Inherent links investigation is discovering reallife uses of trigonometry. Examples are navigation, astronomy, and surveying.
Logic and Order:
Inherent link logic and order refer to making sure that statements follow the correct pattern, and that they are true.
Pattern:
Inherent link pattern shows us how the trigonometry graphs in life vary in occurrence (light, sound, heartbeat, pulse rate etc).
4.5 ATTITUDES TO CLASSWORK
Listed below are some classroom attitudes necessary for students to develop if they are to grow in their mathematical ability and ability to cope with life. Each attitude is stated in the context of what teachers may do to encourage its development.
Courage:
Encourage students to face mistakes, to give answers in front of class when unsure, to ask questions or ask for help, to persistence, and to have the courage to question teacher or book answers.
Enjoyment:
Foster enjoyment through success. The teachers approach should ensure that success happens so enjoyment follows. Provide a pleasantly decorated room.
Honesty:
Educate students to use answers wisely as learning experiences.
Ensure students refrain from copying from others.
Learn from mistakes:
Help students realise that all people make mistakes, including text book writers, and that mistakes show students weaknesses and strengths in topics.
For brighter students, point out that mistakes show carelessness. Text corrections are very important.
Mutual cooperation:
Arrange activities so more able students can help others.
Provide opportunities to show cooperation in studentteacher relationships.
Neatness:
In the course of teaching, emphasise attention to detail, taking time with diagrams, clearly defining answers, accuracy in use of symbols and signs, no liquid paper, crossing out with a single line.
Organisation:
Ensure students learn organisation in their arrangement of folders, notes, tests, corrections, and use of time.
Discourage wasting time with undue embellishments such as changing colours in assignments.
Respect for self and others:
Keep emphasising that every one has ability and is able to contribute in some way, and can be considered useful.
Insist on tolerance for those who differ in race, religion, ability, beliefs, ideas, and ways of doing things. Do not allow students to laugh at the mistakes of others.
Disapprove of derogatory statements about lower mathematics levels and those of lower ability.
Selfconfidence:
To build confidence, have students experience success at the beginning of unit in particular.
Emphasize that making a mistake does not mean failure.
Attempt problem solving in varying circumstances.
Attitude of teachers to students must be positive. Avoid put downs.
Lower ability students can achieve in certain areas. Provide opportunities for them to do so. An example of a good topic is tessellations.
Selfdiscipline:
Encourage students to do homework because of personal benefits, doing as much as they can rather than as little as they can. Show the wise use of answers, and benefits of making personal sacrifices, and patience. Emphasize patience, particularly if success is delayed.
Sense of justice:
To develop a sense of justice, fairness must be seen in discipline and marking;
Teachers need to admit a mistake and apologise if necessary.
Time:
Emphasize efficiency of time, and quality of time. There needs to be short periods of concentrated effort, and undisturbed time.
Return tests and assignments in reasonable time
Allow planned study and revision time.
Be an example of punctuality, showing the need to be on time
Ensure students hand in assignments on time.
Finish class on time.
Trustworthiness:
There is value in teacher expectations being met. For example give enough responsibility for students to work well when left alone. Students can mark their own work at times. Homework should be done for the benefits gained, rather than through fear of detention.
4.6 ASSESSMENT OF VALUES
Assessment is the measurement of students' performance in relation to the outcomes of their courses.
Assessment can take many forms. Informal assessment is carried out through questioning and observing individual students as they work, while examinations and tests are examples of more formal means of assessment.
The assessment should assess a range of outcomes which include knowledge, attitudes and skills, and not just recall. A range of assessment methods is needed to assess this range of learning abilities.
Assessment may be carried out for one or more of the following reasons:
To find what existing knowledge or prior experience students bring to the learning task;
To monitor the progress of students;
To provide motivation;
To provide feedback to students;
To measure the extent to which students meet the course objectives;
To establish a single global mark;
To assess students potential in the subject;
To provide feedback to the teacher.
Assessing Values and Attitudes
Assessment should take account of the learning of values and attitudes. Values are estimates of worth placed on some aspect of experience. Attitudes can be seen as values revealed in action in the longerterm. They may be dispositions to behave in certain ways because of values held, or a group of a persons beliefs organised around situations, people or objects, and held over time. The assessment of values and attitudes can be difficult to put marks to, but certain kinds of such assessment can be done.
Values
Have students identify values or recall values taught. Assessment of awareness of values can occur in tests and assignments. Seven categories of values are mentioned in this framework.
Have students make value judgments or choices about mathematical procedures. These judgments and choices can be assessed on the quality and types of evidence or criteria used.
Have students make their own links between mathematical concepts and life experience, whether this experience is purely intellectual or more spiritual. The criterion of creativity could be applied to this process.
Attitudes
Students need to be aware of desirable attitudes about mathematics, and know why these are important. It is important to look for changes in attitudes over time.
Assessment of attitudes can be based on observation of students in the longerterm, not just on isolated incidents. Observation can be done by:
Teacher assessment and recording of comments.
Selfassessment. Here students assess themselves. Students can be surprisingly honest and perceptive about their own attitudes.
Questionnaires. Student attitudes can be assessed by completion of questionnaires.
Reporting on attitudes and values
Marks: The valuing process and attitudes could be given a weighting when compiling the overall course mark (for example ten percent or less). This could be part of test marks or continuous assessment.
Profiles: A listing of desired values and attitudes could be made and then either:
Indicate on a check list those which are observed (based on reflection or impressions over the term, or accumulated in check lists);
Or report only those observed (based on reflection or impressions over the term, or accumulated check lists). In this way teachers can build a description of a set of values and attitudes students hold about mathematics and learning.
Rating scales. Use a four or five point rating scale.
Descriptive statements. Assessments can be referred to when completing reports or testimonials which describe students attitudes more subjectively.
Expectations and results
It is clear that students achieve better when learning expectations are spelled out clearly and regularly, when assignments are well structured, and when assessment results are provided promptly. This fact is particularly important in relation to the valuing part of learning.
Evaluation
Evaluation extends beyond assessment of how well students are reaching objectives. It goes further in attempting to judge the merit of the course and its objectives, and it seeks ways to constantly improve instruction. Therefore some evaluation could be informal. Teachers may for example observe classroom signs of teaching success, interview students informally about the course, or ask them to evaluate the course in a written questionnaire. Good teachers enjoy their success, but keep a critical eye on their own performance.
Overall, evaluation requires teachers to critically think about how achievable their objectives are, how these objectives reflect school philosophy, how well students are mastering skills and concepts, and about the appropriateness of their assessment procedures.
SECTION 5
Appendices
5.1 What are Values? . . . . . . . 45
5.2 A Christian Approach to Values . . . . 46
A Christian Approach Teaching Mathematics . 47
5.1 WHAT ARE VALUES?
Values are core beliefs or desires that guide or motivate attitudes and actions. They also define the things we value and prize the most, and, therefore, provide the basis for ranking the things we want in a way that elevates some values over others. Thus, they determine how we will behave in certain situations.
Values can be classified under a number of headings such as aesthetic, application to life, creativity, emotional, intellectual, social, spiritual. Examples of each are given in Section 4.1 previously.
Values can also be classified as nonethical or ethical.
Nonethical Values
Much of what we value is concerned with things we like, desire, or find personally important. Wealth, status, happiness, fulfillment, pleasure, personal freedom, being liked and being respected fall into this category. They are called nonethical values since they are not concerned with how a moral person should behave, for they are ethically neutral.
Ethical Values
Values become ethical when they directly relate to beliefs concerning what is right and wrong (as opposed to what is correct, effective or desirable). Ethical values are established by moral duties or moral virtues. Moral duties, such as honesty, fairness and accountability, oblige people to act in certain ways according to their moral principles. Moral virtues go beyond moral duties. They refer to moral excellence, characteristics or conduct (for virtues include characteristics such as charity, temperance, humbleness and compassion.
5.2 A CHRISTIAN APPROACH TO VALUES
Christian Worldview
There has been a trend amongst educators recently for programs to be ethically neutral and not favour any particular religious or philosophical point of view. The outcome has been that students, regardless of their social, racial, and economic background, have absorbed the unmistakable message that right and wrong are relative, that there are no core ethical moral precepts, that they must not be judgmental, that what is right for one person maybe wrong for another. Thus right and wrong are regarded as personal values, never universal or absolute and always dependent upon time, place and circumstance.
A Christian world view, however,
Accepts the values position that such precepts as stealing, cheating and lying, for example, are wrong
Assumes the biblical principal that people are innately sinful and, when left entirely to their own devices, do not always choose the rational and good
Assumes the existence of a certain set of core value principles that are based on Christian teachings as are expressed in the Bible
Uses the core set of values in order to examine particular situations and choose behaviour accordingly
Adopts the principle that values, whether nonethical or ethical, only have ultimate meaning in a biblical perspective
Emphasises the principle and ethical values because it focuses on God as the source of reality, which included perspective
Values are derived from the worldview that sees some form of quality as being the primary reality of human existence. Values are estimates of worth or quality in some aspect of human experience. These qualities include moral goodness and all other aspects of goodness and quality believed in by the ancient civilisations before that later Greeks.
5.3 A CHRISTIAN APPROACH TO TEACHING MATHEMATICS
A Marriage of Mathematical and Christian Worldviews
A worldview can be described as a framework or set of fundamental beliefs through which we view the world and our calling and future in it (Olthius, 1985)
The traditional mathematical worldview sees reason as being the chief source of our beliefs. Probability is not enough basis for belief, so the deductive method or reasoning is adopted. The starting point of reason is certain, so all that follows should also be certain.
Christians see nothing wrong with the use of reason in mathematics or anywhere else. However they do have a problem with the notion of reason alone as the sole source and justification of their beliefs.
The Christian worldview is based on an appeal to authority. Through faith it sees God as the source of everything. His knowledge is communicated in the Scriptures that are certain and wholly true. The goodness of God is important in this view because this guarantees he will not intentionally mislead people. By contrast human knowledge is probable and fallible because such knowledge is biased. Therefore Christians would rather surrender their belief in 1 + 1 = 2 than belief in God and his love.
The task of the Christian teacher is to integrate these two views, as is illustrated by the venn diagram below.
Bibliography: James Olthuis, On World Views, Christian Scholars Review, xiv, 2, 1985, p.155.
The Debate About Reality An Historical Sketch
Worldviews attempt to state what is real. Ancient worldviews such as those of the Hebrews, the early Greeks and many Eastern nations accepted that the idea of God or some form of goodness was the great reality of life. These words in the ancient languages also had the same linguistic roots as other words such as oneness, virtue, excellence and quality. These ideas were seen to best reflect what was real, and generated the mythos the collection of stories that comprised human cultures.
The later Greeks attacked this worldview in two ways. In their search for a universal principle as an expression of oneness in nature, the cosmologists ended up splitting the oneness of God and goodness into two parts form and substance, subjects and objects, mind and matter etc. This paved the way for a later debate about whether truth was more important than goodness. In this debate Plato and Aristotle relegated the idea of goodness to being less important than truth as the best pathway to find reality.
The ongoing debate about truth being more important than goodness has set up a potential conflict between the worldviews of mathematics and Christianity. This framework wishes to resolve this conflict, believing that mathematics is more than reason because it reveals some of the quality found in God. The truth that mathematics seeks is not necessarily opposed to this quality, but is rather part of it.
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