Two Primary Teachers Developing their Teaching Problem-solving during Three-year In-service Training
Päivi Maria Portaankorva-Koivisto 1 * , Anu Tuulikki Laine 1, Maija Ahtee 1
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1 University of Helsinki, FINLAND* Corresponding Author


The use of open problem-solving tasks in mathematics education challenges teachers’ beliefs, knowledge and practices. This article examines the practices of two primary teachers and their 3rd to 5th grade classes during a three-year in-service teacher training project aiming to increase mathematical problem-solving in class. Three lesson videos and two interviews with each teacher were used to provide the data for this study. The results show how different teachers in terms of their beliefs, knowledge and practices during the problem-solving activities can produce mathematically different learning opportunities. Teacher Ann saw mathematics as too rigorous, and to combat this, gave her pupils a great deal of autonomy. Her pupils were encouraged to come up with creative solutions. Teacher Beate emphasized mathematical understanding. Her pupils were guided cognitively and they came up with mathematically elegant solutions. In teaching open problem-solving both autonomy and cognitive guidance are needed.


This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Article Type: Research Article

INT ELECT J MATH ED, Volume 16, Issue 1, January 2021, Article No: em0624

Publication date: 20 Jan 2021

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Article Downloads: 1288

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