Original Research

Using language as a transparent resource in the teaching and learning of mathematics in a Grade 11 multilingual classroom 

Mamokgethi Setati, Terence Molefe, Mampho Langa
Pythagoras | Issue 67 | a70 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/pythagoras.v0i67.70 | © 2008 Mamokgethi Setati, Terence Molefe, Mampho Langa | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 10 October 2008 | Published: 11 October 2008

About the author(s)

Mamokgethi Setati, University of South Africa, South Africa
Terence Molefe, Fons Luminus High School, South Africa
Mampho Langa, Oprah Winfrey Leadership Academy for Girls , South Africa

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Abstract

In this paper, we draw on a study conducted in Grade 11 classrooms to explore how the learners’ home languages can be used for teaching and learning mathematics in multilingual classrooms in South Africa. This report is part of a wider study that is still in progress. Based on an analysis of data collected through lesson observations in a Grade 11 class and learner interviews we argue for the deliberate, proactive and strategic use of the learners’ home languages as a transparent resource in the teaching and learning of mathematics in multilingual classrooms. Such use of the languages will ensure that learners gain access to mathematical knowledge without losing access to English, which many parents, teachers and learners presently see as a necessary condition for gaining access to social goods such as higher education and employment.

Keywords

multilingual classrooms;

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Crossref Citations

1. Research on multilingualism in mathematics education in South Africa: 2000–2007
Mamokgethi Setati, Nancy Chitera, Anthony Essien
African Journal of Research in Mathematics, Science and Technology Education  vol: 13  issue: sup1  first page: 65  year: 2009  
doi: 10.1080/10288457.2009.10740662