Thesis Title

Effects of Integrating Literature and Writing into the Mathematics Curriculum on Learning and Understanding in Second Grade Students

Graduation Date

Spring 2000

Document Type

Master's Thesis

Document Form

Print

Degree Name

Master of Science

Program Name

Education

Abstract

This study investigates how integrating literature and writing into the mathematics

curriculum can foster an understanding of mathematical concepts in second grade students. The ways in which integrated math lessons address the varying academic needs of students was also examined. The focus group represented the wide range of academic ability found in a typical second grade classroom. Each member of the group demonstrated understanding and learning as evidenced by work samples and interviews.

This study also looked at teacher acceptance of curricular integration. Through teacher surveys it became evident that the biggest drawback of using literature and writing in mathematics is time. Teachers lamented that while they saw significant advantages to using literature and writing in math, they often did no, have the time in the day to integrate their program. This problem was reiterated in the published literature studied. Research has shown that teachers a, all grade levels feel that adding another writing component to their day is too time consuming.

The research was based on four methods of data collection: literature review, student work samples and interviews, classroom teacher observation and teacher surveys. Student work was based around two integrated math lessons: one that reviewed repeated addition or grouping numbers and another that introduced measurement. Data collected gave evidence of how an integrated math curriculum can provide access to and retention of mathematical concepts in second graders.

In conclusion, this study found that an integrated math curriculum does increase learning and understanding in second grade students. However, more evidence is needed to gain the support of state and local school boards to allow for time to successfully integrate the mathematics curriculum.

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