Teacher Noticing and Reasoning about Student Thinking in Classrooms as a Result of Participating in a Combined Professional Development Intervention


  • Gloriana Gonzalez University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
  • Gabriela E. Vargas University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign


lesson study, noticing, problem-based instruction, professional development, video clubs, mathematics education research


We examine the teacher learning that results from participating in a two-year professional development intervention that combined lesson study, video clubs, and animation discussions.  We investigate whether and how five teachers’ attention to student thinking changed when implementing problem-based lessons that they collaboratively designed.  Using Sherin and van Es’ (2009) framework, we analyzed 14 lessons taught over two consecutive years.  In the second year, there was a statistically significant difference in the teachers’ use of students’ ideas for generalizing and synthesizing, showing that teachers used higher levels of reasoning.  In three pairs of lessons, the teachers increased their attention to students’ ideas during the second year.  The intervention supported growth in the teachers’ abilities to reason using students’ ideas and to make the lesson’s goal explicit.  This study has implications for increasing the viability of lesson study and designing professional development that promotes instructional improvement in an authentic context.

Author Biography

Gloriana Gonzalez, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Associate Professor of Mathematics Education
Department of Curriculum and Instruction


Amador, J. M., & Carter, I. S. (2016). Audible conversational affordances and constraints of verbalizing professional noticing during prospective teacher Lesson Study. Journal of Mathematics Teacher Education, 1-30. doi:10.1007/s10857-016-9347-x

Beisiegel, M., Mitchell, R., & Hill, H. C. (2017). The design of video-based professional development: An exploratory experiment intended to identify effective features. Journal of Teacher Education, 1-21. doi: 10.1177/0022487117705096

Borko, H., Jacobs, J., Eiteljorg, R., & Pittman, M. E. (2008). Video as a tool for fostering productive discussions in mathematics PD. Teaching and Teacher Education, 24, 417-436.

Borko, H., Jacobs, J., Koellner, K., & Swackhamer, L. E. (2015). Mathematics professional development: Improving teaching using the problem-solving cycle and leadership preparation models. New York, NY: Teachers College Press.

Brase, C., & Brase, C. (1999). Understandable statistics (6th Ed.). Boston: Houghton Mifflin.

Brousseau, G. (1997). Theory of didactical situations in mathematics: Didactique des Mathématiques 1970-1990 (N. Balacheff, M. Cooper, R. Sutherland, & V. Warfield, Trans.). Dordrecht, The Netherlands: Kluwer

Cazden, C. B. (2001). Classroom discourse (2nd ed.). Portsmouth, NH: Heinemann.

Chazan, D., & Herbst, P. (2012). Animations of classroom interaction: Expanding the boundaries of video records of practice. Teachers College Record, 114(3).

Chieu, V. M., Herbst, P., & Weiss, M. (2011). Effect of an animated classroom story embedded in online discussion on helping mathematics teachers learn to notice. Journal of the Learning Sciences, 1-36.

Cochran-Smith, M., & Lytle, S. L. (2009). Inquiry as stance: Practitioner research for the next generation. New York, NY: Teachers College Press.

Cohen, D. K. (2011). Teaching and its predicaments. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.

Common Core State Standards Initiative. (2010). Common Core State Standards for Mathematics. Washington, DC: National Governors Association Center for Best Practices and the Council of Chief State School Officers.

de Araujo, Z., Amador, J., Estapa, A., Weston, T., Aming-Attai, R., & Kosko, K. W. (2015). Animating Preservice Teachers' Noticing. Mathematics Teacher Education and Development, 17(2), 25-44.

Eggins, S. (2004). An introduction to systemic functional linguistics (2nd ed.). London, England: Continuum.

Fernandez, C. (2002). Learning from Japanese approaches to PD: The case of Lesson Study. Journal of Teacher Education, 53(5), 393-405.

Fernandez, C., & Yoshida, M. (2004). Lesson Study: A Japanese approach to improving mathematics teaching and learning. Mahwah, NJ: Erlbaum.

Freudenthal, H. (1991). Revisiting Mathematics Education: China Lectures. Dordrecht, The Netherlands: Kluwer.

Gibbons, J.D. (1993). Non parametric statistics: An introduction. Newbury Park, CA: Sage.

Goldsmith, L. T., & Seago, N. (2011). Using classroom artifacts to focus teachers’ noticing. In M. Sherin, V. Jacobs, & R. Philipp (Eds.), Mathematics teacher noticing: Seeing through teachers' eyes (pp. 169-187). New York: Routledge.

González, N., Andrade, R., Civil, M., & Moll, L. (2001). Bridging funds of distributed knowledge: Creating zones of practices in mathematics. Journal of Education for Students Placed at Risk, 6(1), 115-132.

Herbst, P. (2006). Teaching geometry with problems: Negotiating instructional situations and mathematical tasks. Journal for Research in Mathematics Education, 37(4), 313-347.

Herbst, P., Nachlieli, T., & Chazan, D. (2011). Studying the practical rationality of mathematics teaching: What goes into “installing” a theorem in geometry? Cognition and Instruction, 29, 218-255.

Hiebert, J., Gallimore, R., & Stigler, J. W. (2002). A knowledge base for the teaching profession: What would it look like and how can we get one? Educational Researcher, 31(5), 3-15.

Hohensee, C. (2016). Teachers' awareness of the relationship between prior knowledge and new Learning. Journal for Research in Mathematics Education, 47(1), 17-27.

Horn, I. S. (2010). Teaching replays, teaching rehearsals, and re-visions of practice: Learning from colleagues in a mathematics teacher community. Teachers College Record, 112(1), 225-259.

Horn, I. S., Garner, B., Kane, B. D., & Brasel, J. (2017). A taxonomy of instructional learning opportunities in teachers’ workgroup conversations. Journal of Teacher Education, 68(1), 41-54.

Kersting, N. B., Givvin, K. B., Sotelo, F. L., & Stigler, J. W. (2010). Teachers’ analyses of classroom video predict student learning of mathematics: Further explorations of a novel measure of teacher knowledge. Journal of Teacher Education, 61(1-2), 172-181.

Lampert, M. (2001). Teaching problems and the problems of teaching. New Haven, CT: Yale.

Lappan, G., Fey, J., Fitzgerald, W., Friel, S., & Phillips, E. (1998). The Connected Mathematics Project. Palo Alto, CA: Dale Seymour Publications.

Lemke, J. (1990). Talking science: Language, learning, and values. Westport, CT: Ablex.

Lewis, C. C., & Hurd, J. (2011). Lesson Study Step by Step: How Teacher Learning Communities Improve Instruction (With DVD). Portsmouth, NH: Heinemann.

Lewis, C., & Perry, R. (2017). Lesson study to scale up research-based knowledge: A randomized controlled trial of fractions learning. Journal for Research in Mathematics Education, 48(3), 261-299.

Lewis, C., Perry, R., & Hurd, J. (2009). Improving mathematics instruction through Lesson Study: A theoretical model and North American case. Journal of Mathematics Teacher Education, 12(4), 285-304.

Lewis, C., Perry, R., & Murata, A. (2006). How should research contribute to instructional improvement? The case of Lesson Study. Educational Researcher, 35, 3-14.

Loucks-Horsley, S., Stiles, K. E., Mundry, S. E., Love, N. B., & Hewson, P. (2009). Designing professional development for teachers of science and mathematics (3rd Edition). Corwin.

McDuffie, A. R., Foote, M. Q., Bolson, C., Turner, E. E., Aguirre, J. M., Bartell, T. G., Drake, C., & Land, T. (2014). Using video analysis to support prospective K-8 teachers’ noticing of students’ multiple mathematical knowledge bases. Journal of Mathematics Teacher Education, 17(3), 245-270.

O’Connor, M. C., & Michaels, S. (1996). Shifting participant frameworks: Orchestrating thinking practices in group discussion. In D. Hicks (Ed.), Discourse, learning, and schooling (pp. 63–103). New York: Cambridge University Press.

Olson, J. C., White, P., & Sparrow, L. (2011). Influence of lesson study on teachers’ mathematics pedagogy. In L. Hart, A. Alston, & A. Murata (Eds.), Lesson study research and practice in mathematics education (pp. 39-57). New York: Springer.

Perry, R. R., & Lewis, C. C. (2009). What is successful adaptation of Lesson Study in the US? Journal of Educational Change, 10, 365-391.

Santagata, R. (2009). Designing video-based PD for mathematics teachers in low-performing schools. Journal of Teacher Education, 60(1), 38-51.

Sherin, M., Jacobs, V., & Philipp, R. (Eds.). (2011). Mathematics teacher noticing: Seeing through teachers' eyes. New York: Routledge.

Sherin, M. G., & Han, S. Y. (2004). Teacher learning in the context of a video club. Teaching and Teacher Education, 20(2), 163-183.

Sherin, M. G., & van Es, E. A. (2005). Using video to support teachers’ ability to notice classroom interactions. Journal of Technology and Teacher Education, 13, 475-491.

Sherin, M. G., & van Es, E. A. (2009). Effects of video club participation on teachers’ professional vision. Journal of Teacher Education, 60, 20-37.

Siegel, S., & Castellan, N. J. (1988). Nonparametric statistics for the behavioral sciences (2nd Ed.). New York: McGraw-Hill.

Smith, M., & Stein, M. K. (2011). Five practices for orchestrating productive mathematics discussions. Reston, VA: National Council of Teachers of Mathematics.