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The Multicultural Math Classroom: Bringing in the World.

At first glance, this book did not appeal to me, as the author's tone appeared to be very pedantic. Perhaps I was not prepared to learn more about stretching the cultural envelope around mathematics education.

The author's perspective began to fall into place for me, however, in Chapter I as she commented on teacher expectations. Zaslavsky identifies one of a teacher's first responsibilities as staying sensitive to the community by understanding his or her students' cultural and ethnic backgrounds. With such awareness, teachers can make instruction relevant and reflect mathematics' cultural uses. Zaslavsky believes that teachers should be taught similarly to how they themselves will teach - by exploring, conjecturing, communicating and reasoning, and by trying out new materials and games. Multicultural math education involves meaningful math activities integrated with other subjects and joint planning with teachers of those subjects. She suggests some games and activities that would be appropriate.

The book also explores various cultural approaches to math and math concepts and shows how they can be extended across the curriculum. The Multicultural Math Classroom is must reading for any teacher who wishes to celebrate or explore the mathematical input of a variety of cultures. Reviewed by Barbara Przybyla, Department of Education, Oglala Lakota College, Kyle, SD
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Author:Przybyla, Barbara
Publication:Childhood Education
Article Type:Book Review
Date:Dec 22, 1996
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