Ji-eun Lee , Terri Jongekrijg
DOI: JANT Vol.22(No.1) 19-33, 2019
While the field of mathematics education strives to promote equitable mathematics learning and identifies it as a core instructional practice, less is known about its effective enactment. As teachers’ teaching practices are dependent on their views and beliefs, this study investigated 133 elementary pre-service teachers’ (PSTs’) interpretations of diverse learners’ learning experiences and proposed accommodations for them as reflected in their lesson planning process. Findings showed that PSTs came up with some strategies that are often suggested in teacher education literature, such as using multiple modes of representation and various grouping strategies. However, their responses were generic in nature rather than specific to diverse learners. Also, it was noted that many PSTs’ interchangeably referred to the English Language Learners (ELLs), struggling learners, and culturally diverse learners, inferring that they thought that culturally diverse students must have been ELLs and that ELLs or culturally diverse students must have been weaker students in math. We found that the PSTs used their own frames while filtering and discarding information about diverse student populations to develop instructional plans, rather than based on the results of assessments of learning. We suggest that it is the critical first step to unwrap PSTs’ unproven assumptions to better equip them for working with all of their future students.