Mathematics curricula, worldwide, focus on the teaching and learning of mathematical concepts, which foundation phase learners can use in their daily lives. However, literature and Grade 2 mathematics teachers alike, endorse the assertion by researchers that the mathematical concept of time (included in the measurement concept area) is often difficult for some young learners to understand. This study, therefore, focuses on the teaching and learning of analogue and digital time in Grade 2, in a South African context.
This study, used a qualitative practitioner research approach within the emergent conceptual framework for the understanding of the mathematical concept of time. This conceptual framework utilises key aspects of both the Pirie-Kieren model for the growth of mathematical understanding and the social constructivist theory. The conceptual framework, as well as practitioner research principles, provided the research team with a mechanism to design and implement the CLOCKWISE mathematical programme during the research process. Consequently, different teaching strategies were applied which, it was hoped, would explore and develop Grade 2 learners’ understanding of the mathematical concept of time.
The study specifically sought to answer the research question addressing how the CLOCKWISE mathematical programme enhances Grade 2 teachers’ teaching strategies and learners’ understanding of the mathematical concept of time. Data was generated from the CLOCKWISE mathematical programme, participant observations, interviews, classroom discussions and document analysis. The data was collected and analysed simultaneously. This process resulted in the thematic analysis process and in the discussion of three themes.
The findings from this research indicate that innovative teaching strategies facilitate the active participation of Grade 2 learners in their own meaning-making, and their understanding of the mathematical concept of time. Thus, the study contributes to the literature of the teaching of mathematical time.