Project

Graphic organizers for retention of basic math concepts for adults

Project (M.A., Education (Curriculum and Instruction))--California State University, Sacramento, 2011.

Even after 13 years of education in the United States K-12 system, many adult students struggle to comprehend and retain basic mathematics skills. While many people associate math with negativity and uselessness, mathematics skills remain essential for everything from everyday budgeting to careers reliant on mathematical problem solving. To facilitate this transfer of knowledge, educators need multiple strategies and tools at their disposal. Graphic organizers are one more intervention strategy that the adult educator can use to help reach struggling students. 
 Research to support graphic organizers as an effective strategy came from the most current articles available on the subject. Authors such as David Ausubel, Howard Gardner, Patricia Wolf and Jean Piaget developed the fundamental theories that lead others to see the value that graphic organizers had in educating the struggling learner. 
 
 A review of literature supported using graphic organizers as an intervention strategy in mathematics. Evidence from experiential learning theories, Gardner’s Multiple Intelligence theories, and cognitive science research served as reasons why graphic organizers acted as effective intervention tools in many studies. The lesson plans and graphic organizers included in this thesis incorporated the latter theories and the national mathematics standards, to maximize the learning potential of struggling students. It was this authors hope that this project assisted many students and inspired teachers to create more ways to help students.

Even after 13 years of education in the United States K-12 system, many adult students struggle to comprehend and retain basic mathematics skills. While many people associate math with negativity and uselessness, mathematics skills remain essential for everything from everyday budgeting to careers reliant on mathematical problem solving. To facilitate this transfer of knowledge, educators need multiple strategies and tools at their disposal. Graphic organizers are one more intervention strategy that the adult educator can use to help reach struggling students. Research to support graphic organizers as an effective strategy came from the most current articles available on the subject. Authors such as David Ausubel, Howard Gardner, Patricia Wolf and Jean Piaget developed the fundamental theories that lead others to see the value that graphic organizers had in educating the struggling learner. A review of literature supported using graphic organizers as an intervention strategy in mathematics. Evidence from experiential learning theories, Gardner’s Multiple Intelligence theories, and cognitive science research served as reasons why graphic organizers acted as effective intervention tools in many studies. The lesson plans and graphic organizers included in this thesis incorporated the latter theories and the national mathematics standards, to maximize the learning potential of struggling students. It was this authors hope that this project assisted many students and inspired teachers to create more ways to help students.

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