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Exploring mathematical creativity in the fractions topic in a fifth grade mathematics class

Adıgüzel, Çağla
The purpose of this study was to investigate of 5th grade students‟ mathematical creativity examples related to fractions topic. Therefore, a 5th grade class in a private school in which the mathematics teacher was also the researcher of the study was studied. Basic qualitative research design was used as a research method with convenience sampling at researcher‟s convenience. Data were gathered through observation protocol, paper tasks including two quizzes and a questionnaire, and inclass short interviews between February-March 2016. Data were analyzed by using qualitative methods. Appropriateness, fluency, flexibility, and novelty criteria were searched through data in redefinition, problem posing, and problem solving tasks on paper tasks. Although appropriateness and novelty were the two criteria for in-lesson tasks initially, collective fluency and collective flexibility criteria were considered later. The findings revealed that redefinition task in questionnaire yielded in more responses than other. Problem posing tasks and questionnaire findings showed that students bring their interests, past experiences and daily routines into the context of the problems. In lesson tasks, there were some cases that individual creativity occurred. However, there were some other cases that students interacted with each other such that the idea of a student might be a step for the development of other student‟s idea. In-class short interviews could not provide much information about students‟ reasons behind their ideas. Findings have addressed that certain tasks, such as problem posing tasks, can reveal and support students‟ creativity.