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ABS171 - Everyday life as a resource for learning in classroom interactions: Contextualizing instruction in mathematics and social studies

1.3 Learning, knowledge and agency
11:00 AM, Tuesday 29 Aug 2017 (20 minutes)
This paper aims to categorize and analyze teachers’ use of students’ everyday experiences and knowledge as resources for learning when engaging in so-called contextualized instruction. While the existing body of research shows the potentiality of contextualizing instruction, it also points to a need for more knowledge about what types of resources arise from students’ everyday knowledge and experiences that teachers can mobilize for contextualizing instruction in classroom interactions. Toward that end, we address the following research question: What kind of cultural resources do teachers use for contextualizing instruction? In this case study, data consists of videotaped student-teacher interactions (43 lessons) during one academic year in mathematics, and social science classrooms at lower secondary levels were analyzed. Four different categories of cultural resources are identified and described. The first category was developed from episodes in which the teachers referred to places that were important to the students when dealing with an academic matter. The second category was developed from episodes in which the teachers referred to different types of activities that the students participated in. The third category was developed from episodes in which the teachers used familiar objects as resources for supporting the students’ meaning making and learning. The final category was constructed from episodes in which the teachers mobilized the students’ feelings and personal relations. Variations in the types of resources that are being used are demonstrated, and implications for student learning are discussed.
University College of Southeast Norway
University of Oslo
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