Ritual-enabling opportunities-to-learn in mathematics classrooms

Talli Nachlieli, Michal Tabach

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Ritual teaching, which provides students with ritual opportunities to learn, is common worldwide, notwithstanding extensive research calls for more reform-oriented teaching. Such resilience to change suggests that there are gains for ritual teaching. Therefore, in this study, we search for possible goals of ritual teaching. For this purpose, we suggest two notions: ritual-enabling and exploration-requiring opportunities to learn and seeking possible goals that could be achieved by ritual-enabling opportunities to learn. We adopted the commognitive framework and developed a methodological tool for analyzing lessons using the ritual-exploration lens. We analyzed 11 videos and transcripts of eighth-grade mathematics lessons from the 1999 TIMSS study. Our findings suggest that ritual teaching is essential both for object-level and meta-level learning as it serves as a basis for explorations, and for helping students in their initial steps of entering a new discourse.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)253-271
Number of pages19
JournalEducational Studies in Mathematics
Issue number2
StatePublished - 15 Jun 2019


  • Exploration-requiring
  • Opportunities to learn
  • Ritual teaching
  • Ritual-enabling


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