Prospective Elementary School Teachers’ Use of Graphing Calculators to Solve Systems of Linear Equations and Inequalities
Mathematics & Computer Science
California State University, East Bay
Keene State College
This study involved three classes of prospective teachers. In a pilot study a class of prospective
lower secondary school mathematics teachers participated in the development of an integrated unit
on solving systems of linear equations and systems of linear inequalities using graphing calculators.
The unit was then presented to two classes of pre-service elementary school teachers. Results showed
that one of the two classes of prospective elementary school teachers performed at a comparable level
to the pilot class of secondary school teachers. Findings also confirmed that both classes of future elementary school
teachers performed on the calculator-based activities at a level that was consistent with their
overall performances in their mathematics content classes. Analysis of the students' errors in
solving the linear systems revealed that most of the non-computational errors were errors of
omission or errors due to a lack
of familiarity with properties of linear graphs or with how to interpret order relations graphically.