School leadership for improvement in primary mathematics education:
4. The Mathematics Communication and Participation Framework: Integrated Progressions
"It enables you to have your big mathematical ideas - where you are going with maths in the lesson." In-class mentor
"Because teachers are looking at children and what they can do and then building on that, we're giving them an opportunity to bloom and to shine. Instead of looking at – they don't know this, they can't do that, and coming with a deficit lens, they're coming with a curiosity of: Well what do they know? And what do they understand? How do I push them to the next step?" In-class mentor
"When we do our planning we figure out the focus for our lessons for that week: What maths knowledge? What kind of communication skills do we want to focus on for that week as well?" Teacher
"...the way that you show them that you care is through providing a really safe learning environment - so that they're safe to ask questions, they're safe to take a risk, they're safe to be learners." In-class mentor
"So now my kids aren't afraid to put their hands up and they actually love it even more when their friends challenge them." Chair, Board of Trustees
DMIC uses "The Mathematics Communication and Participation Framework" which is a research-based set of progressions for communicative and participatory actions that advance mathematical learning and reasoning. The framework is a smart tool for teacher planning for integrated progressions across multiple valued outcomes. See a copy of the framework on page 13 of BES Exemplar 1 [PDF 3.7mB].
Teachers plan together using the framework to integrate mathematical, participatory and communication progressions into curriculum and task development. In this way, for example, the curriculum competency "relate to others" is not just assumed or taught once a week. Building skills to relate to others is core to collaborative learning processes.
Teachers are required to plan tasks that connect to the experiences and identities of the children, often through advice from parents and caregivers. They plan how to best "launch" the problem and the group work. Because they plan carefully, teachers are placed to observe and listen to group conversations to track children's understandings and misconceptions to inform next steps. Children develop the confidence and skills to report and justify their group's reasoning to the whole class.
The social norms are the foundation for learning. There is wait time to think and reflect. It is safe to make mistakes so that it is safe to learn and safe for mathematical thinking to be extended. As a result, children can safely and confidently engage with more and more challenging mathematics. This is very different from perspectives on cultural responsiveness that it is OK to leave Māori and Pasifika children silent in class, or that Māori and Pasifika students have a "learning style" that depends only on kinaesthetic experiences rather than safe ways of engaging in new thinking.
Expectations for children's mathematical competencies in DMIC are high. In the Numeracy Development Project implementation, junior children focussed on numbers 1 – 10. In DMIC, junior children learn to work with algebraic patterns so they are able to work with hundreds and thousands.
See the video on Russell School perspectives on The Mathematics Communication and Participation Framework: Integrated Progressions