Middle-school homework engagement in mathematics
This paper describes aspects of school culture that potentially reinforce exclusion from mathematics knowledge through teachers' assignment of mathematics homework, student grouping and classroom instruction. Homework has generally been regarded as a valuable aspect of student engagement and achievement in school mathematics This paper uses a case study and survey approach to determine the extent of homework engagement in Years 8 and 9 and to attempt to understand why students enact this behaviour. It was found that among many students there was a serious decline in homework engagement between Year 8 and Year 9 and this was especially the case for students who were unsuccessful in school mathematics. It was found that aspects of school culture potentially reinforce exclusion from the powerful mathematics knowledge forms needed to transcend social and geographic disadvantage. It is evident that under the current circumstances a relatively small proportion of students who are fortunate to find themselves in top-stream classes or who have rich sources of home support are able to access powerful mathematics.
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Mathematics and Numeracy Curriculum and Pedagogy