Ethnomathematics in resettled indigenous communities whose language and children were once alienated

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The Aboriginal Education Policy for an Australian State (New South Wales Department of Education and Training, 2008) requires partnerships and engagement with the local Aboriginal community. A case study of this policy in action was undertaken in a small rural city in the State.This paper provides an analysis of the strategies by which schools participating in three programs aimed at improving Indigenous education. Through a Stronger Smarter Learning Community, Make It Count and 8-Ways projects, schools have been able to make significant changes in their schools' ethos. Significantly, public education in this rural city has achieved results that reflect high expectations.Interviews with principals, teachers, Aboriginal students and their community highlighted the increasing interaction between the Aboriginal parents and community and the schools, the increasing warmth and welcome extended both ways, and the impact that these approaches are having on curriculum, teaching and learning. The strategies, small steps, clear goals, respect and flexibility resulted in changes in learning mathematics. The analysis illustrates how the Stronger Smarter, Make it Count and 8-ways approaches facilitated changing teachers' perceptions, skills, practices and curriculum and resulted in a culturally responsive, place-based mathematics curriculum.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)67-77
Number of pages11
JournalLa Revista Latinoamericana de Etnomatemática
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2013


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