Publication Details

Verenikina, I. M., Chinnappan, M. & Foxwell, A. (2007). The development of pre-service teachers' conceptual understanding of scaffolding numeracy. In J. Kiggins, L. K. Kervin & J. Mantei (Eds.), Quality in Teacher Education: Considering different perspectives and agendas. Proceedings of the 2007 Australian Teacher Education Association National Conference (pp. 585-595). University of Wollongong: Australian Teacher Education Association.


Becoming a quality teacher involves the acquisition of subject matter knowledge as well as the development of appropriate pedagogical teaching skills. The latter includes knowledge and understanding of scaffolding strategies based in an increasingly popular socio-cultural theory of Lev Vygotsky. Recent research in teaching mathematics identified a wide variety of scaffolding techniques that can be used in the classroom to improve primary school students’ numeracy. However, there is a highly diverse interpretation of scaffolding in the literature which creates difficulties for pre-service teachers when they attempt to make sense of this popular teaching technique and apply it to their teaching. It is the position of this paper that teaching scaffolding in close connection to its theoretical basics will allow pre-service teachers better anchor their repertoire of scaffolding numeracy techniques and will promote its proficient and flexible use in the classroom. This paper describes a combined effort of lecturers in Educational Psychology and Mathematics in teaching scaffolding numeracy. Examples of theoretically grounded case based scaffolding teaching strategies for pre-service teachers are presented.

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