Mathematical anxiety and confidence in women who are entering the elementary teaching field is a subject that has captured the interest of mathematics teacher educators. Previous research has revealed that women who pursue elementary teaching careers are often individuals who themselves have confronted anxiety and low confidence in mathematics during their own K-12 experiences (Brady & Bowd, 2006; McGlynn-Stewart, 2010; Sloan, 2010). Prior studies in mathematics education reveal that individuals’ experiences with mathematics shape how they think about doing and teaching mathematics (Ball, 1988; Rodríguez & Kitchen, 2005). Long before preservice teachers step foot into their teacher education program, their student experiences have shaped how they view mathematics as well as how they perceive their own mathematics abilities (Ball, 1988). “In short, prospective teachers do not arrive at formal teacher education “empty-headed.” Ball, 1988, p.40). Instead, they have already begun to develop a plan or a program of action (Kounin, 2009) of how teachers should teach mathematics. These teaching ideas are derived primarily from their personal experiences as mathematics students (Ball, 1988). Through the use of narratives, teacher educators can gain access to a better understanding of the sense making that preservice teachers have about what qualities and characteristics are important for a mathematics teacher to possess.
Mara V. Martinez
Alison Castro Superfine
Stoehr, K. & Carter K. (2013). Mathematical misconceptions of a different kind: Women preservice teachers’ working theories of mathematics teaching. In Martinez, M. & Castro Superfine, A (Eds.). Proceedings of the 35th annual meeting of the North American Chapter of the International Group for the Psychology of Mathematics Education, p.965. Chicago, IL: University of Illinois at Chicago.