Constructionism advocates that learning takes place when the learner is actively engaged in building or 'constructing'. Empirical Modelling provides a web-based environment that enables learners to build software artefacts in an unusually open-ended and flexible manner. In this paper, we explore the potential for using the principles and tools of Empirical Modelling to support constructionist learning in a Thai secondary school context. An activity was implemented for a Mathayom 3 mathematics class, on the topic of linear inequality that enables students to explore a simple model of a number line. The activity encourages students to go beyond the typical “question/answer” exercise and attempts to give students the capability to build a number line model themselves within the Empirical Modelling environment. The paper discusses the benefits and limitations of the implemented approach.
Links to relevant construals
The paper refers to a Number Line model developed by Antony Harfield on a variant of the JS-EDEN interpreter that can be found at the url: http://harfield.org.uk/jsedencanvas/. A version of the Number Line, based on Harfield's first implementation, has been developed by Jessica Nickson for a standard version of JS-EDEN This can be accessed at http://jseden.dcs.warwick.ac.uk/emile.