Original Research: Indigenous knowledge systems

Examples of cultural artefacts in the preparation of a mathematics lesson

Erica D. Spangenberg
Suid-Afrikaanse Tydskrif vir Natuurwetenskap en Tegnologie | Vol 34, No 1 | a1310 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/satnt.v34i1.1310 | © 2015 Erica D. Spangenberg | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 15 May 2015 | Published: 16 October 2015

About the author(s)

Erica D. Spangenberg, Department of Science and Technology Education, University of Johannesburg, South Africa


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Abstract

South Africa, with its diverse cultural groups, has a rich variety of cultural artefacts based on mathematics. Mathematics, according to the Curriculum and Assessment Policy Statement for Mathematics in the Further Education and Training Phase, is defined as a human activity, which includes mathematical investigations in physical and social phenomena, well aligned with ethno mathematics. Teachers from various cultural groups, however, have limited knowledge of cultural artefacts and this knowledge does not receive sufficient attention during teacher training. The purpose of this article is to investigate examples of cultural artefacts in the preparation of a mathematics lesson. The study is situated in a socio-cultural context. Nineteen mathematics student-teachers from different cultural groups enrolled for a B.Ed. Honours degree, were invited to participate. A qualitative research design, with research reports and one-on-one interviews as data collection instruments, was adopted. The mathematics student-teachers conducted a research project that expected from them to include cultural artefacts in a mathematics lesson. The data was analysed according to themes, subthemes and codes. Findings reveal that participants used different examples of cultural artefacts, which include cultural dwellings, clothing, games and artworks. The article contributes to the introduction of cultural artefacts in a mathematics lesson.

Keywords

Etnowiskunde; wiskunde; klaskamer-aksienavorsing; leerders; onderwysers, konteks.

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