Challenging Mathematics: Classroom Practices

Gloria Stillman, Kwok cheung Cheung, Ralph Mason, Linda Sheffield, Bharath Sriraman, Kenji Ueno

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review

5 Scopus citations
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationNew ICMI Study Series
Number of pages41
StatePublished - 2009

Publication series

NameNew ICMI Study Series
ISSN (Print)1387-6872
ISSN (Electronic)2215-1745


Another source of challenging tasks for the regular classroom is real-world tasks. Designing extended real-world investigative tasks that present manageable and engaging challenges for lower secondary students is not without challenges as was shown in the RITEMATHS project, (extranet.edfac.unimelb. (RITEMATHS was a collaborative research project, funded by the Australian Research Council Linkage Scheme, involving the Universities of Melbourne and Ballarat, six schools and Texas Instruments as industry partners.) Despite thoughtful consideration by the teacher in both designing the tasks used in one part of the project, and providing timely task scaffolding at points during task implementation when students were expected to be challenged by the cognitive demand of tasks, there were always differences between the moves expected of students, the challenges and what transpired. Some students took up the challenges as expected but for others these same challenges did not eventuate as the significance of particular requirements of the tasks were missed, or the mathematical implications of results produced during the task, which should generate challenge, were not realized. At other times, unforeseen challenges arose for individual students as they discovered different complexities in their unanticipated interpretation of tasks (Stillman 2006).

FundersFunder number
Australian Research Council


    • Classroom Practice
    • Cognitive Demand
    • Lesson Study
    • Mathematics Classroom
    • Teaching Experiment

    Cite this