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2018
Viseu, F., and H. Rocha. "Perceptions of mathematics teachers on the teaching of functions and on the use of technological materials - Perceções de professores de matemática sobre o ensino de funções e sobre o uso de materiais tecnológicos." Educação Matemática Pesquisa. 20.2 (2018): 113-139. AbstractWebsite

This study intends to understand the perceptions of mathematics teachers from lower and upper secondary regarding the teaching of Functions and the use of technological materials. For that, a mixed methodology was adopted, and the perceptions of 129 teachers were collected through a questionnaire and four teachers through an interview. The main conclusions point to similarities in teachers' perceptions, but also to some differences related to the teaching level of lower or upper secondary. In the teaching of Functions, textbooks are widely used, but differently depending on the level being taught. The same happens with the representations and with the use that is made of the technologies. Involvement of students in work is another aspect considered important, but again there are differences. The assessment also has similarities, but differs in the valuation ascribed to group work.

Rocha, H., and F. Viseu Teachers’ perspectives on the use of technology to teach Functions at lower and upper secondary. Proceedings of the 5th ERME Topic Conference - MEDA 2018. Copenhagen, Denmark: ERME, 2018. Abstractmeda_rocha_2018.pdf

This study aims to understand the perceptions of lower and upper secondary age teachers of mathematics regarding the use of technology to teach functions. For that, a mixed methodology was adopted, and the perceptions of 129 teachers were collected through a questionnaire (quantitative section) and four teachers through an interview (qualitative section). The main conclusions point to similarities in teachers' perceptions, but also to some differences related to the level that they taught. Teachers show conviction about their knowledge on technology and about the potential of technology in what concerns their teaching and the students’ learning. However, they are not so clear about the best way to articulate technology and paper-and-pencil methods, nor about the use of technology in assessment.

2017
Rocha, H. Analyzing the teacher’s knowledge for teaching mathematics with technology. ICTMT. Lyon, France, 2017. Abstract

The teacher’s knowledge has long been viewed as a strong influence on the students’ learning. Several authors have sought to develop procedures to assess this knowledge, but this has proved to be a complex task. In this paper I present an outline of a conceptualization to analyze the teacher's knowledge, based on the model of the Knowledge for Teaching Mathematics with Technology (KTMT) and a set of tasks. These tasks are chosen by the teacher taking into account the potential of the tasks to take advantage of the technology’s potential. The analysis of the teacher’s KTMT is based on the characteristics of the tasks chosen by the teacher; the balance established between the representations provided by the technology that the tasks advocate; the way how the tasks pay attention to the new issue of seeking for a suitable viewing window; and also the way how the tasks take into account the expectable difficulties of the students in the process of looking for the window.

Martinho, H., and H. Rocha A escrita matemática na resolução de um problema de geometria por alunos de licenciatura em Educação Básica [Mathematical writing in solving a geometry problem by undergraduate students in Basic Education]. EIEM. Lisboa, Portugal: SPIEM, 2017. Abstract

Apesar da escrita ter, habitualmente, uma maior expressão no ensino da Matemática que a própria oralidade, os alunos não estão habituados a explicitar raciocínios e a utilizar linguagem matemática apropriada. A comunicação matemática escrita tem algumas particularidades que podem ser diretamente trabalhadas com os alunos. Por exemplo, a escrita ajuda os alunos a dar sentido à Matemática e a melhorar o próprio discurso. As produções dos alunos transportam informações para o professor contribuindo para a planificação e concretização da sua prática profissional. Assim, e apesar de frequentemente ser descurada, a escrita matemática pode ser trabalhada na sala de aula, em particular, com futuros professores. Este artigo reporta parte de uma experiência realizada com uma turma da Licenciatura em Educação Básica, tendo por base a resolução em grupo de um problema de Geometria e o registo escrito do processo de resolução elaborado pelos alunos. Pretendeu-se desta forma caraterizar a comunicação escrita dos alunos e identificar contributos desta para a compreensão por parte do professor dos conhecimentos dos alunos. A análise da escrita matemática dos alunos, tendo por base um conjunto de critérios previamente definidos, permitiu identificar a preferência destes pelo recurso à representação verbal, dificuldades em fundamentar adequadamente as respostas apresentadas e uma forte tendência para desvalorizar as abordagens prévias que não conduziram à resposta ao problema. Permitiu ainda identificar uma tendência para não explicitar o entendimento das questões que lhes eram colocadas. A forma como os conceitos matemáticos surgem nas repostas escritas permite identificar aspetos relevantes do conhecimento dos alunos.

Rocha, H. "Moving from one representation to another: different ways of doing it, different mathematical learning." The Scottish Mathematical Council Journal. 47 (2017): 40-48.Website
Rocha, H. O professor e a fidelidade matemática da calculadora gráfica no estudo de Funções [The teacher and the mathematical fidelity of the graphing calculator in the study of Functions]. XXVIII SIEM. Viseu, Portugal: APM, 2017. Abstract

The teacher's knowledge of the mathematical fidelity of technology and the impact it has on the teacher’s practice is the focus of this article. Based on the conceptualization of Knowledge for Teaching Mathematics with Technology (KTMT), and involving the teaching of Functions at the 10th grade, we analyze: the situations of lack of mathematical fidelity considered by the teacher in the classes, the way how the teacher manages students' contact with this kind of situations, and how the teacher supports students when they are faced with a lack of mathematical fidelity. The conclusions reached point to: some devaluation of the situations of lack of mathematical fidelity, with only one type of situation being explicitly addressed; a careful selection of tasks, in order to ensure that these situations do not occur too soon; a focus on the identification by the students of this type of situation, suggesting what they can do to confirm the suspicion but without effective implementation of the process. As a consequence, knowledge of mathematical fidelity does not necessarily have a relevant impact on teacher’s practice and it is not easily transformed into a deep teacher’s KTMT.

Babo, A., and H. Rocha. "Problem solving in linear programming: a study in a vocational course - Resolução de problemas de Programação Linear: um estudo no ensino profissional." Revista de Estudios e Investigación en Psicología y Educación. E.1 (2017): 41-46. Abstract

The development of meaningful learning becomes possible when students are actively involved in solving real problems. Thus, this study intends to investigate how students of the 11th grade of a vocational course solve problems of Linear Programming, using the graphing calculator. The conclusions reached indicate that: the interpretation of the conditions of the problems is the most delicate point; the graphical approach using technology is dominant; and the difficulties raised by the problem as well as the need to discuss the results achieved are the basis for the interactions both among the students and between them and the teacher.

Rocha, H. "Some factors impacting the teachers' assessment practices - Influências sobre as práticas de avaliação do professor." REIPE. E.10 (2017): 30-35. AbstractWebsite

The assessment and the role it should be assumed by the summative and formative component are often a reason for discussion. It is therefore important to understand how the teacher assessment practices are characterized and what influences them. That is, identify aspects taken into account when planning assessment; the (dis)continuities between assessment and learning; the divergences/consonances between assessment planned and implemented. The conclusions reached point to a strong influence of peers, to the assessment criteria of the school and to the students’ characteristics, in a scenario where the test is the dominant element in assessment.

Rocha, H. "Teacher knowledge and the teaching of statistics using a graphing calculator - Conhecimento profissional e ensino de estatística com recurso à calculadora gráfica." REIPE. E.6 (2017): 96-100. AbstractWebsite

Teaching statistics is often based on an approach focused on teaching theoretical aspects, disconnected from
practical relevance and from interpretation of results, and where the use of technology lies behind its potential. In
this context, it is important to analyze how the teachers’ knowledge is characterized and to identify aspects of this
knowledge that mark the professional practice. The conclusions reached emphasize the impact of content
knowledge and its influence on knowledge of content and teaching. Knowledge of curriculum is also relevant, as
well as the way how it seems to prevent the development of other types of knowledge.

2016
Lopes, S., and H. Rocha O jogo como promotor da comunicação e aprendizagem matemática [Games to promote communication and mathematical learning]. XXVII SIEM. Porto, Portugal: APM, 2016. Abstract

Games are commonly appointed as a methodological tool capable of promoting students’ effective learning. In this context, this study intends to analyze the impact of mathematical discussions developed while
playing a polynomial game. Namely it intends to analyze the impact on the consolidation of mathematical concepts previously worked in the classroom and on the communications skills. Two case studies where developed involving 10th grade students. Data gathering was based on direct observation and an inquiry. The main conclusions suggest that the game encouraged the discussion about the mathematical contents and therefore promoted the development of the mathematical discourse. Besides that, it allowed a deeper apprehension of mathematical concepts, and the overcome of some difficulties.

Coelho, E., and H. Rocha O raciocínio dedutivo de alunos do 10.º ano de escolaridade [The deductive reasoning of students in the 10th grade]. XXVII SIEM. Porto, Portugal: APM, 2016. Abstract

Deductive reasoning, being central in mathematics, is also usually a source of difficulties for students, more used to the empirical approaches. In this study we focus on mathematical proof and we try to give attention to how this kind of reasoning is envisaged by the students, to the options they assume when asked to develop a deductive reasoning and to the factors affecting the implementation of this kind of reasoning. The study follows a qualitative and interpretative methodological approach, including the completion of two case studies of students of the 10th grade. Data were collected in work sessions and through interviews. The main findings point to a devaluation of mathematical proof and a strong preference for empirical approaches. Yet students show ability to develop different approaches. The preference for the mathematical subject and the attention given in class to the deduction work, appears to be relevant factors when considering the students' ability to develop a deductive reasoning when involved on a mathematical proof.

Rocha, H. Teachers’ use of the different representations in a context of technology integration. Proceddings of 13th International Congress on Mathematical Education. Hamburg, Germany: ICME, 2016. Abstract

This study focus on the different representations provided by graphing calculators, intending to characterize how the teacher uses and integrates them on the process of teaching and learning functions at the secondary level. The methodology adopted is qualitative and interpretative, undertaking two case studies. The main conclusions point to different levels of flexibility in the use of the different representations depending on the teacher, but suggest a strong preference for the graphical and the algebraic representations, a use of the numerical representation based on the graph of the function and a total lack of use of the tabular representation.

Rocha, H. "Teacher’s representational fluency in a context of technology use." Teaching Mathematics and its Applications. 35.2 (2016): 53-64. AbstractWebsite

This study focuses on teacher’s Knowledge for Teaching Mathematics with Technology (KTMT), paying a special attention to teacher’s representational fluency. It intends to characterize how the teacher uses and integrates the different representations provided by the graphing calculator on the process of teaching and learning functions at the high school level. Specifically, it intends to understand the balance established between the use of the different representations, and the way these representations are articulated. The study adopts a qualitative approach undertaking one teacher case study. Data were collected for two school years, at 10th and 11th grades, and included class observation, semi-structured interviews and documents gathering. Data analysis was mainly descriptive and interpretive in nature, considering the problem under study. The conclusions reached reveal an active use of the graphical and algebraic representations and a scarce use of the tabular representation. The lack of balance on the use of representations also includes the work within a representation. In this case the graphical representation is the only one that was explored. The conclusions also indicate a flexible articulation between the two representations usually used. It was possible to identify different patterns on the use of the representations and a frequent use of an interactive approach, marked by repeated alternations between representations. Globally, this study emphasizes teacher’s KTMT and raises questions about the impact of technology on teacher´s representational fluency and about the difference between a numerical and a tabular representation.

Rocha, H. Uma proposta para análise do Conhecimento para Ensinar Matemática com a Tecnologia [A proposal to analyze the teacher's Knowledge for Teaching Mathematics with Technology]. XXVII SIEM. Porto, Portugal: APM, 2016. Abstract

The teacher’s knowledge has long been viewed as a strong influence on the students’ learning. Several authors have sought to develop procedures to assess this knowledge, but this has proved to be a complex task. In this paper I present an outline of a conceptualization to analyze the teacher's knowledge, based on the model of the Knowledge for Teaching Mathematics with Technology (KTMT) and a set of tasks. These tasks are chosen by the teacher among the ones he prepared for his students taking into account the potential of the tasks to take advantage of the technology’s potential. The analyze of the teacher’s KTMT is based on the characteristics of the tasks chosen by the teacher; the balance established between the representations provided by the technology that the tasks advocate; the way how the tasks pay attention to the new issue of seeking for a suitable viewing window; and also the way how the tasks take into account the expectable difficulties of the students in the process of looking for the window.

Viseu, F., S. Campos, J. Fernandes, and H. Rocha. "The use of graphing calculator in the exploration of nonlinear continuous models." Revemat. 11.2 (2016): 79-98. AbstractWebsite

The integration of the graphing calculator in mathematical activity encourages students to express many of their processes and ways of thinking. Since some of the activities at the high school level are carried out with the graphing calculator, we intend to investigate the contribution of this resource to promote the learning of nonlinear continuous models in the 11th grade. By adopting a qualitative methodology, we collected and analysed the students‟ writing productions. At first, students used to present the information given by the calculator with no justification. As they acquire skills in the use of this resource, they usually set up the viewing window in order to visualize the graphical representations of functions that model the problem situation they are working on and also relate the different existing menus in the study of those functions characteristics. Such procedures make students to present the data collected in the calculator with a justification of their arguments and a validation of their conjectures.

2015
Botelho, M., and H. Rocha Aspectos da comunicação matemática na resolução de problemas. Atas do XXVI SIEM. Évora, Portugal: APM, 2015. Abstract

The influence of mathematical communication over the students’ learning led to this research, whose main goal is to understand the impact on problem solving of the students’ communication difficulties. The study adopts a qualitative and interpretative methodology, undertaking two case studies of 10th grade students. The reached conclusions point to the students’ difficulties at the interpretation of the problem, namely at the interpretation of figures, and at the interpretation of the available data, especially when part of them is irrelevant to the problem. Some difficulties were also identified at the communication level, in relation to the arguments used by the students to support their ideas, where a clear preference to restrict them to mathematic calculations was identified.

Resumo
A importância da comunicação matemática sobre a aprendizagem dos alunos, levou à realização desta investigação que pretendeu compreender o impacto sobre a resolução de problemas das dificuldades de comunicação evidenciadas pelos alunos. Optou-se por uma metodologia de natureza qualitativa e interpretativa e pela realização de estudos de caso envolvendo dois alunos do 10.º ano. As conclusões alcançadas apontam para dificuldades na interpretação do enunciado, nomeadamente relativamente às figuras e a dados em quantidade superior ao necessário. Também ao nível da comunicação da resolução foram identificadas dificuldades em fundamentar ideias, evidenciando uma preferência pelo recurso ao cálculo.

Botelho, M., and H. Rocha A comunicação matemática na avaliação da resolução de problemas. Atas do ProfMat 2015. Évora, Portugal: APM, 2015. Abstractpaper.pdf

A aprendizagem dos nossos alunos é fortemente influenciada pelas caraterísticas das tarefas que lhes propomos e a resolução de problemas é frequentemente apontada como uma das tarefas com mais potencial para promover aprendizagens ricas. Mas aprender implica ser capaz de desenvolver raciocínios, de comunicar as nossas ideias e de compreender as dos outros num processo argumentativo e reflexivo. A avaliação das aprendizagens num contexto de resolução de problemas envolve assim, necessariamente como parte importante do processo, uma análise da comunicação que se estabelece entre todos os envolvidos.
Nesta comunicação iremos focar-nos precisamente na comunicação que se estabelece durante a resolução de problemas, abordando as dificuldades dos alunos e dando atenção à interpretação que fazem do enunciado, à compreensão que manifestam das figuras apresentadas, à relação que conseguem estabelecer entre a situação em causa e a informação disponibilizada através de um gráfico, à forma como conseguem explicitar o seu raciocínio e à linguagem matemática que utilizam no decurso do processo de argumentação. Para tal vamos basear-nos num conjunto de problemas propostos a alunos do 10.º ano de escolaridade no decorrer do estudo de funções.

Moreira, C., S. Lopes, and H. Rocha Dos jogos à aprendizagem. Atas do ProfMat 2015. Évora, Portugal: APM, 2015. Abstractpaper.pdf

Neste texto apresentamos os jogos no ensino da matemática como uma forma de aprendizagem de conteúdos e não apenas como um recurso que cada professor pode usar nas suas aulas para tornar a aula diferente. Analisamos dois jogos desenvolvidos por nós e que utilizámos com alunos dos 7.º e 10.º anos de escolaridade, procurando não só apresentar os jogos, mas também aspetos da sua implementação em sala de aula, ponderando o contributo que trouxeram à aprendizagem dos alunos.
Aprender matemática depende de um grande número de variáveis, o que torna o ensino um processo complexo, pois é necessário que se desenvolva o raciocínio lógico, além de estimular o desenvolvimento das mais variadas capacidades transversais, tais como o pensamento autónomo, a criatividade, o sentido de estratégia e a capacidade de resolver problemas.
Duas das dificuldades frequentemente encontradas pelos professores passam pela falta de motivação para a aprendizagem e pelo desinteresse pela Matemática. A solução para estes problemas pode passar pela utilização de jogos para complementar o estudo, mas também para a aquisição de novos conteúdos. No entanto, apenas a implementação dos jogos não basta. O papel do professor é de extrema importância e a planificação e orientação da aula são fundamentais para que se alcancem os objetivos pretendidos.

Campos, S., F. Viseu, H. Rocha, and J. A. Fernandes The graphing calculator in the promotion of mathematical writing. Proceedings of 12th International Conference onTechnology in Mathematics Teaching. Faro, Portugal: Universidade do Algarve, 2015. Abstract

Through writing, students express many of their processes and ways of thinking. Since at high school level some of the activities are carried out with the graphing calculator, we intend to investigate the contribution of this resource to promote the mathematical writing in the learning of continuous nonlinear models at 11th grade. Adopting a qualitative methodology, we collected and analyzed the students’ writing productions. What they write when using the calculator gives evidence about the information valued (when they sketch graphics without any justification); about the strategies used (when they define the viewing window and relate different menus on the graphing calculator); and about the reasoning developed (when they justify the information given by the calculator and the formulation of generalizations and conjectures validation).

Rocha, H. The impact of technologies on the teacher's use of different representations. Proceedings of 12th International Conference onTechnology in Mathematics Teaching. Faro: Universidade do Algarve, 2015. Abstract

This study intends to characterize how the teacher uses and integrates the different representations provided by the graphing calculator on the process of teaching and learning functions at the secondary level. Specifically, it intends to understand the balance established between the use of the different representations, and the way these representations are articulated. The conclusions reached point to an active use of the graphic and algebraic representations and to a scarce use of the tabular representation. The conclusions also point to a flexible articulation between the two representations usual used, assuming different forms and frequently an interactive approach, repeatedly switching between representations.

Rocha, H. The impact of the cultural context on the professional practice of the teacher. Proceedings of 8th Annual International Conference of Education, Research and Innovation. Seville, Spain: ICERI, 2015. Abstract

THE IMPACT OF THE CULTURAL CONTEXT ON THE PROFESSIONAL PRACTICE OF THE TEACHER

H. Rocha

Universidade NOVA de Lisboa, Faculdade de Ciências e Tecnologia (PORTUGAL)

The professional knowledge is a key element of the teacher’s practice. This knowledge is naturally influenced by the teacher’s beliefs and conceptions and by his training, but the context where he develops his practice is perhaps the most decisive influence. At this level, the school where the teacher works and his colleagues are a powerful influence, but the characteristics of his students are even a stronger influence. The cultural diversity of the students and specifically the linguistic diversity are highly relevant elements. A classroom where different languages converge is always a complex context which requires a deeper professional knowledge with inevitable repercussions over the teacher’s practice.

This study focuses on a teacher working with a mathematics’ class of foreign students with heavy linguistic limitations on the language of instruction and it intends to analyze the impact of this context on the teacher’s practice. In particular, it intends to analyze how this context interferes with the characteristics of the tasks proposed by the teacher and with the way how mathematical concepts are presented to the students.

The study adopts a qualitative and interpretative methodological approach, undertaking one teacher case study. Data were collected during one school year by semi-structured interviews, class observation, and documental data gathering. All interviews and classes observed were audio taped and transcribed. Data analysis was conducted in an interpretative way.

The conclusions reached point to an increase on the appreciation of mechanization, to a large reduction in the use of problematic situations and to a presentation of Mathematics as calculation, disconnected from any application, and where reasoning appears as a marginal element or is even missing. The use of several examples becomes a key element of the practice of this teacher. The main finding of this study suggests that language limitations caused a strong impact on the practice of a teacher who considers the understanding and the development of reasoning from the discussion around mathematical ideas as central to the teaching of this subject. It was also possible to identify that the need to find a way to communicate reinforced the formalism of the mathematical language, placing it in the center of the learning process.

Keywords: cultural context, teacher’s practice, mathematics.

Rocha, H. Knowledge for teaching mathematics with technology and the search for a suitable viewing window to represent functions. Proceedings of Cerme 9. Prague, Czech Republic: ERME, 2015. Abstract

The usual difficulties of students regarding the choice of an appropriate window when using the graphing calculator in the study of functions and the importance of the teachers’ knowledge to overcoming them, led to this study. The main goal was to characterize the way teachers address the viewing window in the classroom, trying to infer aspects of the Knowledge for Teaching Mathematics with Technology that can justify that practice. The conclusions reached point to the importance of a set of specific knowledge where I highlight the knowledge of the students’ difficulties, the knowledge of mathematical content necessary to understand the impact of the viewing window on the graphic, and the knowledge of teaching strategies that address both the students’ difficulties and the relevant mathematical knowledge.

Rocha, H. Múltiplas abordagens, múltiplas representações: um contributo para incrementar a relevância da representação algébrica [Multiple approaches, multiple representations: a contribute to increase the relevance of algebraic representation]. Atas do Encontro de Investigação em Educação Matemática. Bragança, Portugal: SPIEM, 2015. Abstract

A tecnologia e o impacto que esta pode ter sobre as diferentes representações utilizadas e, em particular, sobre a representação algébrica são o foco deste artigo. Procura-se assim compreender como é que o professor enquadra a representação algébrica no trabalho em sala de aula e como a procura tornar relevante para os alunos num contexto de utilização da tecnologia. As conclusões alcançadas apontam para a opção por uma estreita articulação entre as representações algébrica e gráfica e para uma criteriosa escolha de tarefas, envolvendo múltiplas abordagens, onde a representação algébrica vem disponibilizar informação fundamental e tendencialmente inacessível a partir de outras representações.

Rocha, H. O formal da matemática e o intuitivo da tecnologia: que articulação?. Atas do ProfMat 2015. Évora, Portugal: APM, 2015. Abstractpaper.pdf

A tecnologia é cada vez mais indispensável no dia-a-dia, rodeando-nos constantemente. Para os nossos alunos é uma realidade que conhecem desde sempre e que tendem a encarar com uma naturalidade descontraída e intuitiva. A facilidade de acesso à tecnologia e o modo como esta tende a enfatizar o intuitivo e a relegar para segundo plano o formal e a demonstração matemática são o foco deste artigo. Partindo da análise de uma proposta de trabalho onde alunos de 10.º ano começam por uma abordagem intuitiva apoiada na calculadora gráfica e terminam a realizar uma demonstração da conjectura que formularam, procuro discutir a problemática. As conclusões alcançadas sugerem que é possível colocar aos alunos situações onde estes se podem aperceber da vantagem de recorrer tanto a abordagens mais formais como a abordagens mais intuitivas e isto mesmo quando a tecnologia é uma realidade em sala de aula. Sugere ainda que a realização de demonstrações pode, entre outros aspectos já identificados na literatura, dar um contributo importante para a compreensão de aspectos basilares da Matemática.

Rocha, H. O formalismo matemático num contexto de utilização da tecnologia [Mathematical proof in a context of technology integration]. Atas do XXVI SIEM. Évora: APM, 2015. Abstract

The technology and how it tends to emphasize the intuitive and overshadow calculus and mathematical proof are the focus of this paper. The conclusions reached suggest that tasks where students might realize the usefulness of calculus as well as of more intuitive approaches are possible even when the technology is a reality in the classroom. They also suggest that proof may, among other things already identified in the literature, make an important contribution to the students’ understanding of fundamental aspects of mathematics.

A tecnologia e a forma como esta tende a enfatizar o intuitivo e a relegar para segundo plano o formal e a demonstração matemática são o foco deste artigo. As conclusões alcançadas sugerem que é possível colocar aos alunos situações onde estes se possam aperceber da vantagem de recorrer tanto a abordagens mais formais como a abordagens mais intuitivas e isto mesmo quando a tecnologia é uma realidade em sala de aula. Sugere ainda que a realização de demonstrações pode, entre outros aspectos já identificados na literatura, dar um contributo importante para a compreensão de aspectos basilares da Matemática.