The aim of this study is to explore pre-service teachers’ procedural and conceptual understanding of pupils’ understanding of mean value, before and after an intervention. Participants are 66 pre-service teachers, and two teacher educators. The data consists of five video-recorded lessons and pre-service teachers’ pre- and post-test discussions. Based on variation theory, the analysis aimed to identify pre-service teachers’ expressed knowledge of procedural and conceptual understanding, focusing four categories of expressions: procedural (P), procedural didactics (PD), conceptual (C), and conceptual didactics (CD). The pre-service teachers’ expressed understanding of pupils’ knowledge developed differently in the five teacher student groups. A shift from procedural to conceptual focus occurred in two groups. The number of procedural related words expressed in the first group decreased from 104 (pre-test: 65 P and 39 PD) to 16 (post-test: 9 P and 7 PD), at the same time as the conceptual related words increased (pre 4 C and 0 CD and post 11 C and 16 CD). In the second group, 87 procedure-related words (36 P and 51 PD) identified during pre-test decreased after the intervention (3 P and 9 PD). Instead, concept-related words increased from 16 (12 C and 4 CD) to 29 (10 C and 19 CD). The changes occurred among participants who had got, except of theoretical instruction, challenging hands-on tasks about the Mathematical content in focus. The findings from this study contribute to understand how design of instruction for pre-service teacher contributes to enhance teacher students’ didactic perspective on pupils’ learning.
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