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  • 1.
    Björkdahl Ordell, Susanne
    et al.
    University of Borås, School of Education and Behavioural Science.
    Eldholm, Gerd
    University of Borås, School of Education and Behavioural Science.
    Räkna med textil2003Report (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    This study presents a project that has been carried out in a second grade classroom. The aim of the project is to develop children’s way of learning through working with textile where practice will be interwoven with theoretical understanding. The purpose is to study if we by combining textile and mathematics can stimulate children’s creative and problem solving ability. This study was conducted during one year, It was funded by the Swedish Government. The project itself, textile and mathematics, has been going on for five years. We have mainly worked with six year olds but this time with children eight year of age, a group of 15 children. Data was collected by participant field observations, interviews, documents and a test. Data was analyzed in order to discern the progress of learning, with focus on mathematical problem solving, in a context of practice in textile craft and design. The results of this study show that children working in this context and who are encouraged to reflect upon their work, get an overall picture of what they are doing, that help them to better understand and remember the process of problem solving. Mathematical concepts were easily found in textile activities, especially in weaving and patch work, where mathematical problem solving is an inseparable part. Children have been asked to make a model of their planned product before starting the actual working process. This stimulates them to move between an abstract level of understanding to a concrete. The creative process is made visible by looking at children working but also in their own comments, - “The hard part was to make up one’s mind about color and pattern, once that was done, it was easy”. Both boys and girls enjoyed working with textile craft and design. This means that boys have enlarged their area of competence into a typical female base of knowledge. The girls have, as a change to most school projects concerning “equal opportunities” where girls are encouraged to try typical male activities, been aware of that typical female activities also involve mathematical, logical, and spatial problem solving.

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