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The residential school experience: residual effects upon First Nations students in their understanding and mastery of tasks within the mathematics curriculum

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The residential school experience: residual effects upon First Nations students in their understanding and mastery of tasks within the mathematics curriculum

MacDougall, Kenneth J. A (2007) The residential school experience: residual effects upon First Nations students in their understanding and mastery of tasks within the mathematics curriculum. Masters thesis, Concordia University.

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Abstract

We examine the influence of Canadian governmental policies upon the ability of First Nations students to succeed in the understanding of mathematical principles. The materials used in the task consist of mathematical curriculum (the introduction of mathematical descriptors and geometric manipulation), pre-evaluated in Quebec, and having common syllabus in British Columbia. After establishing standards of comparison with a Montreal sample population, materials are taught to two separate, small communities of First Nations students. One group attends a Band-administered institution, while the second set is subject to the regulations of the public sector. It was assumed that there is no readily identified impediment to Aboriginal students succeeding in mathematics, beyond those that influence other normal populations. Whatever factors contributed towards the failure of Native students to maintain demographic consistency was due to external issues not relevant to the curriculum, but affecting its instruction. Our study shows that, despite using Euro-traditional instructional methods and evaluation tools not screened for cultural bias, Aboriginal students actually fared better in the materials presented than did the comparative group. It also suggests that subsequent success becomes a function of teacher influence isolating classroom issues emanating from prior generations, and debilitating the children's learning paths. Such resistance may be overcome by non-Aboriginal teachers when they are attuned to the historical imperialism of their roots, and integrate curriculum needs with traditional Aboriginal learning methods. Further research is also required to assist teachers in isolating social behaviour from true learning, which may have application in multi-racial institutions

Divisions:Concordia University > Faculty of Arts and Science > Mathematics and Statistics
Item Type:Thesis (Masters)
Authors:MacDougall, Kenneth J. A
Pagination:x, 182 leaves ; 29 cm.
Institution:Concordia University
Degree Name:M.T.M.
Program:Teaching of Mathematics
Date:2007
Thesis Supervisor(s):Szabo, Fred E
ID Code:975506
Deposited By: Concordia University Library
Deposited On:22 Jan 2013 16:09
Last Modified:18 Jan 2018 17:40
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