Source: Teaching and Teacher Education, Volume 24, Issue 1, January 2008, Pages 140-153This study compares US and Chinese elementary mathematics teachers' beliefs about how students learn mathematics. Interviews with teachers in each country revealed that Chinese and US teachers have distinct ways of thinking about how mathematics should be taught and how students learn.
Many Chinese teachers talked about developing students’ interest in mathematics and relating the content of mathematics lessons to real-life situations. The US teachers talked about students' learning styles and using hands-on approaches to learning mathematics. Furthermore, these beliefs may be widespread and persistent within each country because the set of ideas among teachers appear to be internally consistent. Implications for teacher change and the study of teachers' beliefs are discussed.