Elementary teachers’ mathematics subject knowledge: the knowledge quartet and the case of Naomi

Tim Rowland, Peter Huckstep, Anne Thwaites

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282 Citations (Scopus)


This paper draws on videotapes of mathematics lessons prepared and conducted by pre-service elementary teachers towards the end of their initial training at one university. The aim was to locate ways in which they drew on their knowledge of mathematics and mathematics pedagogy in their teaching. A grounded approach to data analysis led to the identification of a ‘knowledge quartet’, with four broad dimensions, or ‘units’, through which mathematics-related knowledge of these beginning teachers could be observed in practice. We term the four units: foundation, transformation, connection and contingency. This paper describes how each of these units is characterised and analyses one of the videotaped lessons, showing how each dimension of the quartet can be identified in the lesson. We claim that the quartet can be used as a framework for lesson observation and for mathematics teaching development.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)255-281
Number of pages27
JournalJournal of Mathematics Teacher Education
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2005


  • elementary teaching
  • mathematics
  • teacher education
  • teacher knowledge
  • videotape

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