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Teachers’ visualisation of the mathematics curriculum.

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This study explores how teachers in a suburb of Durban visualise the Mathematics curriculum. The inquiry is predicated on the assumption that teachers’ visualisations make visible their foci on aspects of the Mathematics curriculum which is often not explicit. The study also aims to explain the different types of visualisations each participant held and the implications thereof for practice. This was a qualitative study conducted at a private school in Durban. Six teachers participated in the study. The data was generated by asking teachers to produce an image of their visualisation and conducting semi structured interviews. An interpretivist paradigm framed the study. Six visuals were generated by participants (tree, pizza, toolbox, jigsaw puzzle, germinating seed and 4-tiered cake). Based on its findings, the study identifies an understanding of the teachers’ thoughts of the Mathematics curriculum. New teachers begin by following the curriculum at hand very closely. Over time, as they learn more about both learners and curriculum, they adapt and adjust their interpretation and implementation of the curriculum. Finally, the study shows that new and aspiring teachers need opportunities to analyse and critique curriculum, beginning during teacher education and continuing in the in-service period in the company of their more experienced colleagues and mentors.


Masters Degree. University of KwaZulu-Natal, Durban.