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Raising Achievement in Secondary Mathematics by Anne Watson

Raising Achievement in Secondary Mathematics


Raising Achievement in Secondary Mathematics by Anne Watson

This book brings together research and professional knowledge to enhance the teaching of lower attaining students in secondary mathematics. Attainment in mathematics is an important social issue, since underachievement can make a difference to future life choices, particularly amongst certain groups of students. Raising Achievement in Secondary Mathematics shows how well-meant teaching strategies and approaches can in practice exacerbate underachievement in maths by making inappropriate demands on learners. As well as criticizing some of the teaching and grouping practices that are considered normal in many schools, the book also offers an alternative view of attainment and capability, based on real classroom incidents in which 'low attaining students' show themselves to be able to think about mathematics in quite sophisticated ways. The author argues that teaching could be based on learners' proficiency, rather than on correcting deficits in knowledge and behaviour. She describes how a group of teachers who believed that their students could do better with higher expectations developed a range of principles and strategies to support their work - the students showed significant progress and the teachers felt they were doing a better job. With numerous case studies, ideas and teaching strategies, this book is for anyone who is teaching, or learning to teach, mathematics.

About the Author

Anne Watson (sole author) is Reader in Mathematics Education at the University of Oxford. Before that she was a secondary mathematics teacher for many years, committed to raising achievements of learners from normally disadvantaged social groups. Being out of school has enabled her to spend a long time thinking about how she could have done that better, and researching how normal practices, both in classrooms and in educational systems and institutions, seem to conspire against sustained improvement. Learning from teachers, both informally and through research, has enabled her to develop arguments for radical changes in practice. She has published numerous books, papers and professional articles on the teaching of mathematics, and is in demand as a speaker in the UK and abroad.

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Book Info

Publication date

16th July 2006


Anne Watson

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Open University Press


208 pages





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