Sunday, December 1, 2013

Bass and Ball (2008) #hashtag

"Mathematics rests on shared definitions, meanings, and ways of establishing conclusions. In this way, mathematics differs from arenas of human activity where individuals are free - even encouraged - to develop their own ideas, interpretations and ways of working. The importance of the collective in mathematics is a special educational resource. This confusing problem they [the students in the article] are debating is one which they must all agree. They must move from their different perspectives to a common one, and they must do so using the rules and tools of mathematical practice rather than personal or idiosyncratic ones whose effectiveness would depend on power or personal persuasion. Mathematics both requires and depends on common ideas and practices; it does not submit to individual domination or privilege."

I have no idea how to properly cite this article. I'm not sure where it came from or if it was ever published. I'm not sure whether Prof. Bass wrote the selected text or Dean Ball wrote it, but I feel better in life knowing that run my school understand math. No offense to another other teachers out there, but math is the only subject where we actually know things. I'll sleep better tonight knowing that someone else out there understands math.

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