Yerushalmy, M. & Botzer, G. (to appear September 2010) Teaching secondary mathematics in the mobile age. In Zaslavsky, O. and Sullivan, P. (Eds.) Tasks For Secondary Mathematics Teacher Education.


Engaging mathematics students in active exploration of real-life scenarios and supporting inquiry processes is a major challenge for teachers. It requires a shift in the teacher’s role from lecturing and telling to listening, observing, facilitating, and guiding. In our exploratory work we found that mobile devices can offer a challenging setting for educators to deepen their thinking about sensing mathematics and about socially constructing and mediating mathematical knowledge. The unique qualities of this setting follow from the mobility that enables learners to share knowledge. To demonstrate the possibilities of such a setting, we present innovative function graphing applications for mobile phones and a sequence of tasks designed to support the qualitative and quantitative inquiry of functions. This learning environment creates situations that have the potential to introduce new learning practices for prospective and practicing teachers, enriching their content knowledge and enabling them to explore within themselves the type of teaching they would like to perform. We suggest that by engaging in such tasks, mathematics teachers can rethink their pedagogical, curricular, and subject matter knowledge, connect mathematical knowledge with real-life contexts, and interact socially in ways that support the creation of a community of proficient mathematics teachers. Key words: mobile learning, guided inquiry, mathematical modeling, sociocultural interaction, collaboration.

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