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Literature Review:

Teachers Professionalism:
The professional learning of teachers is an ongoing process of knowledge building and
skill development in effective teaching practice (NPEAT, 2003). In the context of a diverse
society, it is the process through which teachers in high minority schools master both content and
diverse student pedagogy.
In its pursuit of equity in education, the Intercultural Development Research Association
continually provides many professional learning opportunities to teachers of diverse student
populations. These represent an important part of IDRA efforts to increase teaching quality and
equity inside todays classrooms. IDRA president Dr. Mara "Cuca" Robledo Montecel describes
this major reform in a framework for quality education, the Quality Schools Action Framework
(2005).
Through several of IDRAs professional development models, like Math Smart!, Science
Smart! and Coaching and Mentoring of Novice Teachers, coaching and mentoring are provided
to beginning teachers and to other teachers who strive to provide rigorous and relevant content
instruction to English language learners and other culturally diverse students. Teachers of
mathematics, science and language are particularly looking for support as these are content areas
where many students perform poorly on academic tests often due to content teachers lack of
rigorous and accurate preparation. Dr. Abelardo Villarreal cites teaching quality as a major
principle for an evidence-based secondary education plan for English language learners (2009).

Hargreaves (1997) believed that both teaching & learning is followed with indication to
the requirements of controlling the classroom, whereas, success & survival of teachers based
upon their balancing ability with respect to teaching & learning. Hargreaves (1997) has
researched out that huge proportion of teachers are falling in the pre-professional phase of the
teachers development, however, throughout the world system of education is moving towards
the teachers development phase of post-professionalism.
It has been observed from the study of numerous literatures that professionalism of
teachers is being considered in various notions. Beck & Murphy (1996) pointed out their
prospects regarding teachers professionalism that it must emphasize on efficacy, satisfaction &
commitment, whereas, factors to be emphasized in teachers professionalism according to Eraut
(1994) are specific knowledge, ethical codes & conduct, & expertise, however, emphasizing
factors from the prospects of Hargreaves & Fullan (1998) are sensible judgment, interaction with
matters relating to assessment, involvement of curriculum, students care, ongoing learning &
professional judgment.
Smylie (1988) stated that efficacy of teachers might be considered as professional filter
across which new ideas, thoughts & innovations must move on through it before these are being
internalized by teachers & teachers modify their teaching behavior according to them.
Macpherson et al. (1999) pointed out in their research that learning & teaching are
encouraged to be effective through undertaking initiatives by teacher leaders.

Mathematics as a subject:
Mathematics is an essential element of communication, a powerful tool and a fascinating
subject of study in its own right. It involves the ability to calculate, to analyze, to estimate and to
reason logically. Problem-solving in mathematics requires the selection and application of a
range of skills, including the discovery of patterns, the interpretation of data, the making of
models, the recognition and communication of related ideas. Creativity in problem-solving is
also instrumental in innovations and inventions. Mathematics is therefore fundamental to
effective education.
Mastery of Mathematics provides both a basic preparation for adult life and a wide range
of career choices. Since technology continues to dominate work and personal lives, competence
in mathematics will continue to be a growing demand in any society. Knowledge of mathematics
also assists the study of other subjects in the school curriculum, including science, social
sciences, economics and accounting.
The importance of learning mathematics is not only because of its utilitarian purposes but
also because it helps to develop the aesthetic and cultural values and positive attitudes necessary
for the development of self-competence and self-fulfillment. The study of mathematics helps to
train the minds of the learners and assist them in the development of logical thinking and spatial
awareness; it provides them with a powerful means of communication - to represent, to explain
and to predict - and fosters qualities of perseverance, imagination and flexibility, selfmanagement and working skills as well as positive attitudes to life's challenges.
Tackling a mathematical puzzle or carrying out a mathematical investigation may provide
enjoyment and entertainment. Studying geometrical patterns helps people appreciate the beauty

of the nature and stimulate aesthetic judgment. Solving mathematical problems can give the
emotional satisfaction inherent in any creative exercise.
Since mathematics is an interrelated subject the school curriculum encourages learners to
make connections between mathematics and other learning areas; wherever there is a need for
calculation, estimation, measurement, quantitative research or precise communication through
symbols and graphs, mathematical principles, knowledge and skills have to be applied. It
therefore cannot be taught or learned in isolation.
In the history of mathematics education different philosophical perspectives exist
pertaining to the nature of mathematics. At one extreme, mathematics is seen as static, fixed and
either discovered or waiting to be discovered i.e. absolutist view of mathematics and at the
other extreme mathematics is seen and interpreted as socially constructed phenomena i.e.
fallibilist view of mathematics. Lakatos (1976) suggested that the apparent multiplicity of
philosophies of mathematics can be identified as two competing aspects that he calls Euclidean
and Quasi-empirical. Proponents of Euclidean base of mathematics forms universal absolute
foundation, whereas quasi-empiricist sees the growth of mathematical knowledge as a process of
conjectures, proofs and refutations, and accept the uncertainty of mathematical knowledge as
part of the nature of mathematics. Similarly, Dossey (1992) draws on this discussion of the
nature of mathematics as far back as the fourth century BC, with Plato and Aristotle as two main
contributors to these broader views of mathematics. Plato took the position that the objects of
mathematics had an existence of their own beyond the mind in the external world and Aristotles
view of mathematics was based on experienced reality, where knowledge is obtained from
experimentation, observation and abstraction (p.40). Moreover, Lerman (1990) discusses two
contrasting views of mathematical knowledge i.e. absolutism and fallibalism. Therefore, in the

mathematics education literature even today, whether mathematical knowledge is discovered or


invented, is part of an ongoing debate.
Furthermore, Ernest (1991) states three different philosophical views about mathematics
i.e. instrumentalist, Platonist and problem solving view of mathematics and their implication on
teachers teaching practices. He elaborates that those who hold the instrumentalists view
consider mathematics as an accumulation of facts, rules and skills to be used in the pursuance of
some external end. This means that mathematics is considered as a set of tools and knowing
mathematics is to know what tools you have and how to use them. Thus, mathematics is seen as
a set of unrelated but utilitarian rules and facts. Mathematics teachers holding instrumentalist
views will consider themselves as masters having and imparting mathematical knowledge.
Platonists consider mathematics as a static, but unified body of knowledge, a crystalline realm
of interconnecting structures and truth, bound together by filaments of logic and meaning. Thus,
mathematics is a monolithic, a static immutable product. This means that Platonists focus more
on the holistic approach, knowing how various tools work together and what makes them work.
Mathematics teachers holding the Platonist view would try to find linkages among the
mathematical concepts rather than considering them as unrelated rules and facts. The problem
solving view of mathematics encompasses mathematics as a dynamic, continually expanding
field of human creation and an ever changing field with inventions generating patterns and then
distilled into knowledge. These three philosophies of mathematics can be seen as forming a
hierarchy; Instrumentalism at the lowest level (involving knowledge of mathematical facts, rules
and methods as separate entities), followed by Platonist view (involving a global understanding
of mathematics as a consistent, connected and objective structure) and problem solving view at
the highest (seeing mathematics as a dynamically organized structure located in a social context).

Thus, these different philosophical views about the nature of mathematics enabled researchers to
develop survey questionnaire in order to explore mathematics teachers views about the nature of
mathematics.
Mathematics is the study of topics such as quantity (numbers), structure, space, and
change. There are numerous opinions according to mathematicians and philosophers as to the
precise definition & scope of mathematics. Mathematicians search for arrangements and
consume them to invent new estimations. The truth or falsity of estimations is being resolved by
mathematicians through mathematical proof. When mathematical arrangements are suitable
paradigms of real facts, then mathematical analysis can provide estimated about nature. Through
the use of abstraction and logic, mathematics developed from counting, calculation,
measurement, and the systematic study of the shapes and motions of physical objects. Practical
mathematics has been a human activity for as far back as written records exists. The research
required to solve mathematical problems can take years or even centuries of sustained inquiry.
An information- and technology-based society requires individuals, who are able to think
critically about complex issues, analyze and adapt to new situations, solve problems of various
kinds and communicate their thinking effectively. The study of mathematics equips students with
knowledge, skills and habits of mind that are essential for successful and rewarding participation
in such a society. The more the technology is developed the greater the level of mathematical
skill is required. Mathematical structures, operations and processes provide students with a
framework and tools for reasoning, justifying conclusions and expressing ideas clearly. As
students identify relationships between mathematical concepts and everyday situations and make
connections between Mathematics and other subjects, they develop the ability to use
Mathematics to extend and apply their knowledge in other fields.

National Curriculum:
The National curriculum is being considered as the plan of teaching & learning among
entire schools. It determines the list of subjects to be taught & the knowledge to be obtained
regarding those subjects, abilities & knowledge to developed against every specified subjects.
Standards for every specific subject are being settled & it also delineates the targets for
enhancing students encouragement to achieve them. Furthermore, the National Curriculum
regulates the methods of assessment with the purpose of measuring students progress.
Every school is being authorized to select the appropriate way for the teaching of
National Curriculum to their students, & to develop their own methods of learning & lesson
plans according to their students requirements.
The National Curriculum is controlled & established by the Qualifications & Curriculum
Development Agency. Qualifications & Curriculum Development Agency is the part of the
Department for Children, Schools & family. While outlining the National Curriculum, the
qualification & curriculum development agency organizes evaluations, exams & determine the
qualifications that students should get.
Currently, National Curriculum Framework for teacher education 2009 is prevailing. The
framework is an undertaking of the National Curriculum for teacher education to motivate
interested parties & stakeholders to provide their thoughts on the advancements; qualitative &
quantitative that must be accomplished in educating teachers at schools, graduate, post-graduate,
doctoral & post-doctoral levels. Previously, curriculum framework was established in 1978,
followed by the NCERT framework for teacher education in 1988, afterwards it directed towards

first curriculum framework for quality teacher education by NCTE in 1988. This was prospered
in 2005 by a teacher education framework by NCERT & in 2006 another joint curriculum
frameworks by NCTE & NCERT.
The following themes permeate the National Curriculum for Mathematics.
The curriculum is designed to help students build the solid conceptual foundation in
Mathematics that will enable them to apply their knowledge skillfully and further their learning
successfully.
The curriculum emphasizes on the geometrical concepts that enable the students to
think logically, reason systematically and conjecture astutely.
The curriculum stresses graphics that enable the students to visualize and interpret
mathematical expressions correctly rather to manipulate them blindly.
The curriculum recognizes the benefits that current technologies can bring to the
learning and doing mathematics. It, therefore, integrates the use of appropriate technologies to
enhance learning in an ever increasingly information-rich world.
In the National Curriculum for Mathematics teachers role has been rerouted that shifts
from dispensing information to planning investigative tasks, managing a cooperative learning
environment and supporting students creativity in developing rational understanding of the
concepts of Mathematics.
To ensure that assessment and evaluation are based on curriculum expectations and the
achievement levels outlined in the curriculum, specific strategies are suggested that lead to the

improvement of student learning. An effective learning-outcomes-oriented quality assurance


system that is based on constant monitoring and effective feedback loops is recommended.
Print materials, particularly the textbooks, have to play a key role towards providing
quality education at all levels. Although there are many stakeholders that contribute towards the
overall learning of the child yet the importance of textbook as a reservoir of
information/knowledge cannot be ignored. In addition to the textbook, teaching and learning
resources include teachers manual, workbook and electronic resources. The guidelines to
develop these resources are elaborated.

Significance of National Curriculum:


The United States Department of Education (2004) stated that teachers those are
providing their teaching services at middle level schooling must possess in-depth knowledge &
understanding of National Curriculum & must have ability to teach students as per the
guidelines; including contents & other matters, disclosed in the proposed National Curriculum
designed for the middle level schooling.
Ball et al. (2001), Shulman (1987) illustrated National Curriculum knowledge as typical
form of knowledge with respect to teaching.
The National Curriculum acknowledges that learning involves developing certain values
and attitudes; along with knowledge and skills, and that the curriculum cannot be neutral about
them.

The process, quality and outcomes of learning strongly influence students' and parents'
attitudes towards learning. Teachers' expectations, the influence of peers, the support of parents
and the community as well as students' motivation are all significant factors in the development
of attitudes towards learning.
The National Curriculum encourages positive attitudes towards all areas of learning. It
seeks to provide opportunities for the development of challenging learning activities which are
relevant to students' experiences and interests, and are appropriate to their levels of achievement.
It promotes assessment methods and procedures which give students frequent opportunities to
demonstrate their level of performance and provide constructive feedback about their progress.
Teachers are also expected to remember that they are role models for students, and that
they can have great influence on their attitudes and behavior.
The National Curriculum is underpinned by certain basic values shared by our society.
They are based on a fundamental belief in the worth of all persons, the importance of a cohesive
and inclusive society, recognition of the interdependence of all human beings and the
environment, a healthy democracy, a productive economy, and a belief in the inherent value of
all forms of life in nature. It is felt that, although the values held by individuals and groups in our
society may vary to a certain extent, the values reflected in the national curriculum are
commonly held by all.
Schools, through its practices and procedures, are expected to reinforce these commonly
held values.

Hill, Rowan, & Ball (2005) declared in their research that it has been shown by the
evidence that students learning can be influenced by teachers knowledge regarding the National
Curriculum with respect to specific subject as improvement of teaching strategies according to
the guidelines disclosed in National Curriculum regarding every aspect of teaching is being the
direction of numerous professional development activities.
Grossman (1995) acknowledged that teachings assessment as a profession & teachers as
professionals is being powerfully supported by National Curriculum knowledge of teaching staff
at middle level schooling.
Gatonton (2008) conducted a research study, qualitative in nature, to evaluate the
performance with respect to knowledge of National Curriculum among experienced & nonexperienced teachers.
Ball (2000) presented his views that with the aim to assist students in their learning, it is
essential for teaching staff to own knowledge & understanding of National Curriculum in their
area of regarding specific subject.
Detailed achievement objectives are given in the subject curriculum document and in the
programs of study for each subject; these documents also provide suggested teaching and
learning strategies, possible resources, and procedures for assessment. It is expected that these
documents will form the basis on which curriculum leaders in schools (Studies Co-coordinators,
Deputy Heads for Curriculum, Heads of Subjects) and teachers will design detailed weekly and
termly schemes of work that are relevant to the learning needs of their students. Such a process
must also be linked to the development of school-based policies specific to the various subject
areas of the curriculum.

Schools need to determine how effective the programs of study and the methods of
instruction are, if they are to help students achieve the objectives set and meet their individual
needs. And teachers can best improve their professional practice through the processes of
monitoring and review. Schools' curriculum leaders and teachers must, therefore, establish
appropriate systems for curriculum management, monitoring and evaluation - including effective
recording and reporting systems - based on guidelines to be devised in consultation with
schools.
The implementation of the National Curriculum will also be monitored nationally,
through the education support services of the Schools Division, the research curriculum
planning, assessment, testing and accreditation services of the Education Planning Division and
the Quality Assurance service of the Ministry of Education. The work of these sections will be
guided by the recommendations of the National Curriculum Committee of the Ministry of
Education, which oversees the planning, development and implementation of the National
Curriculum for schools.
Monitoring and evaluation structures set up within schools as well as nationally will
enable all teachers to participate in these processes and contribute to the continuous
improvement of the National Curriculum.
It is expected that there will be general reviews of the National Curriculum at six-yearly
intervals.
Carless (1998) & Vandenberghe (2002) believed that especial training of teachers in this
context & their support also plays an essential part on the behalf of teachers for the

implementation of modified teaching practices, encouraging teachers knowledge & their


understanding regarding National Curriculum.
It has been observed from the study of Ozden (2008) that teachers knowledge regarding
their subjects National Curriculum positively influences their teaching approaches & teaching
effectiveness.
It has been shown by the previous studies that for success of teachers & for making their
teaching effective, knowledge & understanding of National Curriculum is an essential factor.
The focus of this current research study is towards knowledge & understanding of
National Curriculum regarding mathematics & its values from the aspect of teachers while
teaching.

Relationship among National Curriculum of Mathematics & Mathematical Teachers:


Borg (2006) declared that over the last few decades demand for evaluating Mathematical
teachers knowledge & understanding about the National Curriculum of mathematics has been
observed. On the other hand, in developing countries, very few studies has been conducted
where among educational system huge proportion of teaching staff is inefficiently trained &
having limited resources.
National Council of Teachers of Mathematics (2000) has pointed out that for making the
teaching of Mathematics effective in nature; it requires in-depth knowledge & understanding of
National Curriculum regarding mathematics.

Rowan, Schilling, Ball & Miller (2001), Shulman (1987) derived from their research
studies that for effective teaching, teaching staff of mathematics must own the required
knowledge & expertise regarding; the presentation of mathematical contents in generalized form
for students, in-depth knowledge & understanding of curriculum of mathematics established at
national level.
Derry, Wilsman & Hackbarth (2007) suggested in their research study that level of
National Curriculum knowledge among mathematical teachers regarding mathematics must be
increased.
Fennema & Franke (1992) stated that while having detail knowledge of contents
regarding mathematics as outlined in the National Curriculum framework for Mathematics,
teaching staff of mathematics at middle level schooling can organize their teaching of
mathematics to inspire their students to understand & learn mathematics on continuous basis.
From the teaching perspective of mathematics, National Curriculum knowledge & its
understanding regarding mathematics is an essential factor. In-depth knowledge regarding the
National Curriculum of mathematics greatly affects the mathematical teaching. Ideal teachers of
mathematics apart from the subject matter knowledge, also possess the knowledge regarding
teaching approaches, utilize the curriculum designed for mathematics & foresee questions &
misunderstandings.
Lerman (1990) stated that little or nothing will be achieved with reference to
improvement & change in teaching practices of mathematics in classroom, unless teaching staffs
knowledge & understanding about mathematics & its proposed National Curriculum are
analyzed.

Ball (1988-90-91-2000), Ball & Bass (2000), Ball & McDiarmid (1990), Buchmann
(1984), Leinhardt & Smith (1985), Ma (1999), Shulman (1987) stated that detail knowledge &
understanding of National Curriculum Framework for mathematics plays essential part while
providing teaching facility regarding mathematics & such knowledge of mathematical teaching
staff have great influence on their way of teaching at middle level schooling.
Ball, Lubienski & Mewborn (2001) elaborate the knowledge & understanding of National
Curriculum Framework for Mathematics as an exclusive knowledge, outline contents & structure
that interlinks subject matter with prospect of teaching.
Ball et al. highlighted that teachers must be well-aware of National Curriculum
Framework for Mathematics for developing the understanding for students along with the
knowledge of all mathematical contents conceptually & as well as in detail.
National Curriculum knowledge & its understanding is an essential feature of knowledge
regarding mathematics for the purpose of teaching.
Carless (1998) stated that for the successful implementation of the teaching strategies for
Mathematics at middle level & to be effective as a teacher, teachers must be well aware of the
theoretical principles of National Curriculum relevant to Mathematics.
Breen (1991) recommended that by detecting the Mathematical teachers knowledge &
understanding; regarding their subjects National Curriculum & its significance, possess by them
& the way they incorporate such knowledge in their teaching practices, will lead to determine the
suitable support can be provided in professional development.

Sternberg & Horvath (1995) pointed out that teaching staff of Mathematics must possess
great knowledge & understanding of National Curriculum regarding their subject along with the
knowledge of subject matter in order to transform such knowledge of subject matter for students
at middle level schooling; flexibly, efficiently & effectively.
Burns (2009) endorsed that Mathematical teachers knowledge & understanding about
National Curriculum with reference to mathematics at middle level schooling should be a
dominant research approach. To discover the approach of incorporating the knowledge &
understanding of Mathematical teachers regarding their subjects National Curriculum into their
teaching practices at middle level schooling, it is essential that Mathematical teachers
understanding regarding the significance of Mathematics National Curriculum & the professional
knowledge they possess regarding modes of teaching it should be placed as more crucial element
into the research interest.