Imagery and Estimation

Lawrence, Catharine (1996). Imagery and Estimation. MPhil thesis The Open University.



Concentrating upon measurement, which the author behaves may be an area rich in image budding, the study starts with an historical overview of the naming of measure words. This examines their relationship to everyday experience and the colourful body of imagery that they evoke. She then turns to the contemporary and looks at present day adults and their measure-related imagery.

The study progresses with a literature survey of both the less recent and the current writings on imagery and moves from there to look at present educational practice and the place of measurement teaching within the National Curriculum. Drawing on her own experience and that of colleagues she chooses to examine a particular area of measurement teaching which can pose problems for children, measurement estimation.

The estimation process as understood both by modem classroom practitioners (and illustrated by main line teaching materials) and by educational researchers is examined in detail, from which a teaching plan for estimation is formulated. The work then concludes with some classroom experiments conducted to see if an increase in image building exercises can affect the accuracy of measurement estimation of the children involved.

The conclusions are tentative yet important and they are twofold in intention. On the one hand the work suggests to other teachers an area for development which may enhance their own teaching and so help their students, this being the use of image building exercises in estimation work. On the other hand, the work indicates related areas in which further research might usefully be directed.

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