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I Thought This Was a Study on Math Games: Attribute Modification in Children’s Interactions with Mathematics Apps

School of Education, Department of Teaching and Learning, Virginia Commonwealth University, 1015 West Main Street, P.O. Box 842020, Richmond, VA 23284-2020, USA
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Academic Editor: Patricia S. Moyer-Packenham
Educ. Sci. 2017, 7(2), 50; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci7020050
Received: 1 December 2016 / Revised: 13 April 2017 / Accepted: 26 April 2017 / Published: 1 May 2017
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Critical Issues in Mathematics Education)
Technology is an increasingly important component of education. Children’s mathematical interactions with technology have become a focus of mathematics education research, but less research has investigated constructs that contribute to these mathematical interactions. Attributes of children and technology play a key role in mathematical interactions and both children and technology can modify attributes during these interactions. Grounded in the Artifact-Centric Activity Theory and linked to recent developments in research on technology in mathematics education, this qualitative study extended an earlier exploratory study to investigate attribute modification. In particular, this study examined patterns of attribute modification evident during fifth grade students’ mathematical interactions with two mathematics virtual manipulative touchscreen tablet apps. Results included three categories related to attribute modification: (1) reactive attribute modification (linear progression or repeated repetition); (2) unperceived attributes and opportunities for proactive modification; and (3) proactive modification (seeking equilibrium, seeking disequilibrium, or seeking equilibrium and disequilibrium). Findings have implications for designers, teachers, and researchers of educational technology. View Full-Text
Keywords: Artifact-Centric Activity Theory; virtual manipulatives; attribute modification; educational technology; mathematics education Artifact-Centric Activity Theory; virtual manipulatives; attribute modification; educational technology; mathematics education
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Tucker, S.I.; Johnson, T.N. I Thought This Was a Study on Math Games: Attribute Modification in Children’s Interactions with Mathematics Apps. Educ. Sci. 2017, 7, 50.

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