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Abstract

In this article, the author describes how a curricular unit that provided opportunities for active engagement and participation was used to support the geometric reasoning of sixth grade African American (AA) male students. The curricular unit was designed to support students’ understanding of quadrilaterals. Data sources (pre- and post-tests, video recordings of classroom episodes, mathematics interviews) were analyzed through quantitative and qualitative methods. Findings showed that students improved in their understanding of quadrilateral classifications. Specifically, students were able to use their knowledge of geometry to evaluate the relationships between pairs of quadrilaterals. However, levels of understanding were varied. Little research (Berry, 2008; Corey & Bower, 2005; Lattimore, 2005; Stinson, 2006; Thompson & Lewis, 2005) examines the content knowledge of African American males, a necessary step to addressing inequities in education. This study aims to address this deficiency and contribute to our understanding of the teaching and learning of AA adolescent males.

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