Sharpen concrete teaching strategies that empower students to reason-and-prove How do teachers and students benefit from engaging in reasoning-and-proving? What strategies can teachers use to support students’ capacity to reason-and-prove? What does reasoning-and-proving instruction look like? We Reason & We Prove for ALL Mathematics helps mathematics teachers in grades 6—12 engage in the critical practice of reasoning-and-proving and support the development of reasoning-and-proving in their students. The phrase “reasoning-and-proving” describes the processes of identifying patterns, making conjectures, and providing arguments that may or may not qualify as proofs–processes that reflect the work of mathematicians. Going beyond the idea of “formal proof” traditionally relegated only to geometry, this book transcends all mathematical content areas with a variety of activities for teachers to learn more about reasoning-and-proving and about how to support students’ capacities to engage in this mathematical thinking through: Solving and discussing high-level mathematical tasks Analyzing narrative cases that make the relationship between teaching and learning salient Examining and interpreting student work that features a range of solution strategies, representations, and misconceptions Modifying tasks from curriculum materials so that they better support students to reason-and-prove Evaluating learning environments and making connections between key ideas about reasoning-and-proving and teaching strategies We Reason & We Prove for ALL Mathematics is designed as a learning tool for practicing and pre-service mathematics teachers and can be used individually or in a group. No other book tackles reasoning-and-proving with such breadth, depth, and practical applicability. Classroom examples, case studies, and sample problems help to sharpen concrete teaching strategies that empower students to reason-and-prove!

Convincing Students Why Proof Matters

Chapter 2 convincing students why proof matters

Specific examples can be very useful in determining the validity of a mathematical statement or conjecture. In fact, while trying to prove Fermat’s Last Theorem (that no three positive integers a, b, and c satisfy the equation an  + bn = cn for any integer value of n greater than 2), many mathematicians started with specific examples. Examples, however, have limitations. In this chapter, you will explore the affordances and limitations of using examples in constructing a proof. In particular, in this chapter you will be encouraged to consider

  • how examining specific examples can provide insight to a mathematical statement, but an argument must go beyond specific cases to be valid; and
  • how a teacher’s actions during instruction ...
  • Loading...
locked icon

Sign in to access this content

Get a 30 day FREE TRIAL

  • Watch videos from a variety of sources bringing classroom topics to life
  • Read modern, diverse business cases
  • Explore hundreds of books and reference titles