and Collaborative Learning Communities

Join Geoff Roulet for a presentation on Math-Towers, a learning community powered by software that scaffolds problem-posing, sharing and solving by students.


Full recording: voice, text chat, web tour, slides

Related Resources

PowerPoint slides from the session: Math-Towers Math 20 2010.ppt
PowerPoint slides in PDF: Math-Towers Math 20 2010.pdf
Link to a paper that expands on the sessions: Math-Towers - Promoting and Supporting Online Collaborative Mathematical Exploration.pdf


All Math 2.0 events are free and open to the public. Information about all events in the series is here:

Wednesday, October 6th 2010 we will meet in the LearnCentral public Elluminate room at 6:30pm Pacific - 9:30pm Eastern time. WorldClock for your time zone.


To join:
  • Follow this link:
  • Click "OK" and "Accept" several times as your browser installs the software. When you see Elluminate Session Log-In, enter your name and click the "Login" button
  • You will find yourself in a virtual room. An organizer will be there to greet you, starting about half an hour before the event.
If this is your first Elluminate event, consider coming a few minutes earlier to check out the technology. The room opens half an hour before the event.

About Math-Towers

Math-Towers is a project of the MSTE Group (Math, Science and Technology Education). The MSTE Group operates under the Faculty of Education at Queen's University. Funding for Math Towers has been provided by Imperial Oil Foundation, Inukshuk Wireless Partnership, and the MSTE-RBC endowment fund.

Sponsoring Institutions
Sponsoring Institutions

The goals and design of are rooted in distinct conceptions of mathematics and understandings of how humans come to develop mathematical knowledge. "Functions are first formed in the collective as relations among children and then become mental functions for the individual" (Vygotsky, 1981, p. 165) . If adolescents are to progress from concrete to formal thinking (Inhelder & Piaget, 1958) and develop the ability to abstract, generalize, and articulate reasoned arguments for conjectures, they must be provided with opportunities to collaboratively practise these mental habits. "It was formerly thought that each child was able to reflect on, give reasons for, construct proofs for, and search for the foundations of any position. An argument was spawned out of the clash of such reflections. But, in fact, matters stand otherwise. Research shows that reflection is spawned from argument" (Vygotsky, 1981, p. 165). It is possible to develop classroom based environments where this collective-social to individual-mental progression takes place (Cobb, Boufi, McClain & Whitenack, 1997). attempts to use the Web to provide such mathematical environments.

Event Host

Geoff Roulet is an associate professor at Queen's University School of Education. Geoff's recent interests include:
  • Development of mathematical learning environments for Grades 6-12 and the study of students' construction of mathematical knowledge within these environments
  • Information and communication technology applications in the learning and teaching of mathematics: implications for curriculum, teaching practice, classroom environment, and assessment
  • Curriculum development in secondary school mathematics, in particular the introduction of mathematical modelling into school programs
  • Teachers' and student-teachers' conceptions of mathematics and their interaction with instructional practice
  • Web-based tools for the collaborative construction of knowledge