Instead of intervention in children with disabilities, let’s do some intervention in the way we teach math.
My vision is to create classrooms in which all kids are able to become mini mathematicians, modeling their world through mathematics. This requires that we design an intervention into how we currently teach mathematics to children. This website is a place to learn about innovative approaches to disability (neurodiversity, Universal Design for Learning, and Disability Studies in Education) that can shake up our current practices. It is also a place to learn about research on math learning in inclusive settings.
What is mathematizing, you may ask? Hans Freudenthal defined mathematics not as a set of skills or facts to be memorized, but as a human activity, as the process of modeling reality with mathematical tools. This is the kind of mathematics that learners with disabilities are rarely allowed to access. Learners with disabilities are asked to memorize isolated facts. Yet paradoxically, many learners with disabilities struggle most with memorization and understanding isolated facts. Instead, I propose that mathematics be seen as as sense-making, as opening up new possibilities in understanding and changing the world through the use of numbers, measurement, data and space as tools.
I loved you presentation on Deficit Language today. I look forward to learning more about your work.