Teaching Mathematics to Academically Diverse Learners in Middle School Classrooms: Teachers Views and Reflections

NAMLI, Şenol
Understanding the process that teachers go through in the classroom and identifying the challenges they face is crucial for providing inclusive mathematics education. Knowing what teachers need to deliver successful mathematics instruction is a reference point for proposing solutions. Observing teachers and gathering their opinions provides access to their behaviours and allows these behaviours to be contextualized. This thesis investigates what it means to be a mathematics teacher in a classroom with academically diverse students, from the teachers' perspective. A qualitative-focused sequential mixed-methods design was chosen for conducting this study. A scale was developed to determine teachers' beliefs about providing inclusive mathematics in heterogeneous classrooms. Subsequently, phenomenological interviews were conducted to explore the essence of the teaching process in such classrooms in terms of knowledge and application. It was found that teachers have no deficiency in their knowledge of teaching mathematics, but they struggle to transform this knowledge into action for inclusive teaching due to various reasons. Furthermore, findings suggest that teachers do not believe a mathematics teaching environment that can respond to academic diversity can be established under current conditions. The findings indicate that for the improvement of the quality of mathematics teaching and the professional satisfaction of teachers, teacher education programs need to be more practical and focused on real classroom environments. Teachers need to work in cooperation to increase their capacity to respond to classroom diversity and provide student-centred mathematics education. This process requires consideration not only of teachers but also of educational policies and school administrations.
Citation Formats
Ş. NAMLI, “Teaching Mathematics to Academically Diverse Learners in Middle School Classrooms: Teachers Views and Reflections,” Ph.D. - Doctoral Program, Middle East Technical University, 2024.