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The primary purpose of Mathematics for Elementary Teachers: An Activity Approach is to engage prospective elementary and middle-school teachers in mathematical activities that will enhance their conceptual knowledge, introduce them to important manipulatives, and model the kind of mathematical learning experiences they will be expected to provide for their students. The activities incorporate inductive thinking and the use of physical models and visual images to develop concepts and encourage higher-level reasoning.
The Activity Approach can be packaged with Activity Sets that correspond to each section of the text and augment the ideas presented in the sections. Each Activity Set consists of a sequence of inductive activities and experiments that enable the student to build an understanding of mathematical ideas through the use of models and the discovery of patterns. In addition, over thirty Material Cards are included that complement the color cardstock materials in the Manipulative Kit. A section on Ideas for the Elementary Classroom at the end of each chapter includes a suggested Elementary-School Activity that has been adapted from one of the chapters Activity Sets.
Additionally, a companion text, Mathematics for Elementary Teachers: A Conceptual Approach, is also available from the Bennett, Burton, and Nelson team. Mathematics for Elementary Teachers: A Conceptual Approach can be used independently or along with Mathematics for Elementary Teachers: An Activity Approach.