Re-awakening wonder : creativity in elementary mathematics

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Waite, Leslie Anne
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Lethbridge, Alta. : University of Lethbridge, Faculty of Education, c2013
This thesis begins with the premise that in order to be mathematical students must first discover and develop their creativity. Within the context of classroom-based action research, the following questions are examined: What is mathematical creativity? Under what conditions does mathematical creativity flourish? And, how is creativity manifested in young children? To this end, the definition of creativity is expanded to include those daily moments of discovery, where clarity is reached and we say, "Oh! I get it!" It outlines how an inquiry methodology increases creativity and allows students to view mathematics from a place of wonder and excitement. In addition, different language-learning strategies are used to gain insight into how these strategies helped a group of grade three French Immersion students begin to define themselves as mathematically creative. Furthermore, the thesis explores the importance of relationship, relevance and rigour in planning for creativity in mathematics. It explains why a culture of not knowing is crucial to the development of mathematical understanding and confidence in young children and how ambiguity, frustration and perseverance are necessary elements in creative thinking. Also, it considers the importance of second language development and its implications for mathematics. Finally, it suggests creativity in mathematics is possible if students use dialogue and reflection to explain how their thinking is changing, or what new things they are discovering about mathematics.
xii, 117 leaves ; 29 cm
Mathematics -- Study and teaching (Primary) -- Alberta , Creative thinking , Dissertations, Academic