Conference paper Open Access

Just mathematics? Fostering empowering and inclusive mathematics classrooms with Realistic Mathematics Education

Kathotia, Vinay; O'Brien, Kate; Solomon, Yvette

This paper considers how Realistic Mathematics Education (RME) can serve as a platform for developing socially just and inclusive mathematics classrooms, and examines how teachers new to RME interpret and enact this potential. Drawing on exit interviews from a large RME trial in England, we explore teachers’ interpretations of RME’s potential for transforming students’ access to mathematics, and their understanding of the role of the “realistic” element of RME in inclusion. We also study one teacher’s classroom practice and reflections to investigate how he endeavours to build on his students’ “real life” starting points. Our analysis of how he appropriates RME to achieve his aims underlines the need to identify inclusion as an object of reflection in continuing professional development.

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