Not all relevant instructional information comes in the form of spoken words. In the present study, the authors examine multiple modalities of nonspoken forms of representation - specifically gestures, pictures, objects, and writing - used by 3 teachers in 3 years of 1st-grade math lessons. Teachers frequently used visually based modalities of representation and tended to produce combinations of representational forms rather than isolated representations. There were individual differences in their preference for representation types. Teachers used representations to accompany important spoken terms and to respond to student confusion. With nonspoken representations, teachers conveyed information critical to the explanation of mathematical concepts. Students must attend to the visual as well as vocal means of expressing information to gain access to all of the information presented in mathematics lessons.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Developmental and Educational Psychology