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Using History of Mathematics in Mathematics Teaching: Babylonian Square Root Method

Author(s): Fatih Karakuş

Journal: Necatibey Faculty of Education, Electronic Journal of Science and Mathematics Education
ISSN 1307-6086

Volume: 3;
Issue: 1;
Start page: 195;
Date: 2009;
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Keywords: Square root | history of mathematics | mathematics teaching

Mathematics history is an excellent source of interesting problems that supplies opportunities to problem-solving skills. The purpose of this study is to explain a topic chosen from the history of mathematics into the mathematics classroom. For that reason, Babylonian method in eight grade mathematics lesson for calculating square root was used. First, the method was explained in detail including the questions where it comes from and why it works with certain specific examples. Moreover, two spreadsheets were developed for using mathematics lessons. By this way, students had different opportunities to calculate square root except for text books. Additionally, the method provided some basis of limits and infinity.

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