Course Description

Teachers, please join the Temple University Cognition and Learning lab on August 9 for a day dedicated to research on decimal learning, fraction learning, and how they relate to spatial skills. Participants will: 

  • Cover current literature on decimals, fractions, and proportional reasoning
  • Discuss research conducted in local Philadelphia schools
  • Develop lesson plans on decimals, fractions, and proportional reasoning.
  • Identify potential learning areas that research should address.

Participating teachers will receive .4 Continuing Education credits

Lunch will be Provided

Date: August 9, 2019

Time: 10-3:30

Location: 1701 N 13th Street, Philadelphia PA 19122

Course Outline

10:00-10:30 - Registration and Welcome

10:30-11:15 –What Research Tells Us about Proportional Reasoning

  • Presenter: Dr. Elizabeth Gunderson
    • Part 1: What does research tell us about proportional reasoning?
    • Part 2: Questions and group discussion

11:15-12:00 – What Research Tells Us about Fraction Learning

  • Presenter: Dr. Jing Tian
    • Part 1: Why are fractions difficult for students to learn, and what teaching methods does research suggest to be helpful?
    • Part 2: Questions and group discussion

12:00-1:00 – Lunch

1:00-1:45 – What Research Tells Us about Decimal Learning

  • Presenter: Cathy Ren
    • Part 1: What are common errors made by students in decimal learning, and what can we do to prevent them?
    • Part 2: Questions and group discussion

1:45-2:30 - Breakout Sessions: Developing Lesson Plans

    • Teachers will break into small groups organized by grade level to develop concrete lesson plans related to one or more topics discussed.

2:30-3:30 - Closing Discussion

    • Small groups will briefly present their lesson plan activities to the entire group. Group will discuss how implementing these plans will look in their classrooms and any concerns/ideas they may have concerning activities.


The Instructors:

  • Dr. Elizabeth Gunderson - Elizabeth Gunderson, Ph.D., is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Psychology at Temple University. She received her Ph.D. in Developmental Psychology from the University of Chicago in 2012 and her B.A. in Computer Science & Psychology from Yale University in 2005. Dr. Gunderson’s research focuses on the cognitive and socio-emotional factors that affect young children’s academic achievement, especially in the domain of mathematics.
  • Cathy (Kexin) Ren - Cathy is a graduate student in Psychology at Temple University, concentrating in Developmental Psychology. She received her B.S. in psychology at Sun Yat-sen University in China. She is interested in children’s numerical learning, especially difficulties they have in learning rational numbers. By doing research in this field, she hopes to find a way to help both children and teachers to better learn and teach mathematics
  • Dr. Jing Tian - Jing Tian, Ph.D., will join the Department of Psychology at Temple University as a post-doc researcher in August, 2019. She received her Ph.D. in Psychology from Carnegie Mellon University in 2018 and her B.S. in Chemistry and Psychology from Peking University in 2013. She is interested in children’s learning and failures to learn in the domain of mathematics. Her research examines various aspects of difficulty that children experience when learning math and aims to provide insights into more effective instruction.

For more information on our lab and to see published work from Dr. Gunderson please visit the TUCL website. If you have any questions or would like more information please email Victoria Bartek, TUCL Lab Manager, at victoria.bartek@gmail.com

Accrediting Associations

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