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The Mathematics Teachers Shift from the Traditional Teacher-Centred Classroom to a More Constructivist Student-Centred Epistemology

DOI: 10.4236/oalib.1106389, PP. 1-26

Subject Areas: Education

Keywords: Student-Centered Learning, Teacher-Centered Learning, Mathematic Teaching Pedagogies, Mathematics Teaching Strategies, Traditional Classroom Instruction

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Abstract

This paper sought to look at the mathematics teachers’ effort to shift from the traditional teacher-centered classroom instruction to a democratic student-centred classroom. Three research questions provided direction for the study. Four mathematics teachers participated in a qualitative case study research in a community of practice approach. They taught mathematics in two secondary schools for a period of 2 years. During this period, Six Senior secondary two students volunteered to participate in three focus group discussions on the effectiveness of the mathematics teacher’s effort to shift from the traditional teacher-centred pedagogy to the student-centred approach. Classroom observations focus groups interviews and reflective interview were used as means of collecting data for the study. The findings of the study suggest that, the mathematics teachers had initial challenges shifting their traditional teacher-centred classrooms instruction to a more student-centred pedagogy. The findings also suggested that certain characteristics of the traditional teacher-centered classroom instructions were observed in the mathematics teachers’ practice. The study shows the teachers resolved to shift their philosophy, and therefore developed strategies to foster its effectiveness. Some benefits of this strategy were outlined by the teachers and the focus group students. It was therefore recommended that, the need to shift classroom instruction in Nigeria from the traditional teacher-centered pedagogy to a student-centred pedagogy is non-negotiable. There is also an urgent need for mathematics teachers to relax the already tensed mathematics classroom climate, to foster positive teacher-students relationship as suggested in the constructivist philosophy.

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Bature, I. J. (2020). The Mathematics Teachers Shift from the Traditional Teacher-Centred Classroom to a More Constructivist Student-Centred Epistemology. Open Access Library Journal, 7, e6389. doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.4236/oalib.1106389.

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