When you ask people what is mathematics, most people would probably say that it is computing or arithmetic. However, math is so much more and it is my job to help students understand that. While recently reviewing the National Board's AYA Math Certificate Standards for content validation, I was struck (or as the kids say "shook") by what was written on pg. 14.
It states "Thinking mathematically includes representing, modeling, proving, experimenting, conjecturing, classifying, visualizing and computing - all ways in which to approach mathematics and life." There are definitely many times this year when this statement would describe mathematics in my classroom. Now I wonder. Do my students see math as more than computing? Do they feel like they are "thinking mathematically?" The statistician in me wants to gather some data on this and I plan to in the next few weeks.