Calculators : should they be used in the math classroom?
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The National Council of Teachers of Mathematics (NCTM) stresses the importance of utilizing technology in the classroom to help students learn mathematical concepts and values. However, have teachers at both the elementary and secondary levels adopted the NCTM's recommendations? Several aspects of this issue were examined in the research project, including a full explanation of the NCTM's beliefs, various opinions held about the use of calculators in education, the degree to which teachers have included calculators in their classrooms, and mathematical concepts teachers have experienced success in teaching with calculators. The research involved examining articles and books written about calculators in mathematics education, in addition to analyzing previous studies done on this topic. Lastly, the author formulated and distributed a survey to 148 high school mathematics teachers in order to investigate the acceptance of calculators by the teachers and their schools. Through the research, it was discovered that elementary teachers seem to use calcula tors less in their classrooms than secondary teachers. It was also found that the availability of calculators in the schools does not quite meet the suggestions of the NCTM. Another result is that while the use of calculators is disregarded by many people, the advantages of their use are felt by many others. Only time will tell if calculators will be accepted into the mathematics classroom to the degree the NCTM favors.