Mathematical Argumentation in Middle School Book

Mathematical Argumentation in Middle School – The What, Why, and How

A Step-by-Step Guide With Activities, Games, and Lesson Planning Tools

Authors: Jennifer Knudsen, Harriette S. Stevens, Teresa Lara-Meloy, Hee-Joon Kim, Nicole Shechtman. Publisher: Corwin

Want your middle schoolers to intelligently engage with mathematical ideas? Learn how to bring mathematical argumentation alive in your classroom—all within a thoroughly explained four-part model that covers generating cases, conjecturing, justifying, and concluding.

Mathematical Argumentation in the Middle School will help you

  • Immediately engage students in fun, classroom-ready argumentation activities
  • Plan lessons that foster lively, content-driven, viable argumentation
  • Help students explore mathematical ideas and take ownership of their learning
  • Facilitate deep mathematical understanding
  • Promote students’ precise use of mathematical language to construct, justify, and critique mathematical ideas and mathematical statements or the arguments of others.
  • Encourage logical, clear connections between abstract ideas for enhanced 21st century skills

This guide delivers all the tools you need to get serious about mathematical argumentation and bring well-planned, well-constructed mathematical discourse to life in your classroom today!


If you share my belief that “construct viable arguments and critique the reasoning of others” are perhaps the nine most important words in the Common Core era, then Mathematical Argumentation in Middle School is just what you need. This powerful and practical book takes us through an accessible process of generating cases, making conjectures, and justifying that fully supports bringing SMP #3 to life in our classrooms.

Steve Leinwand
American Institutes for Research

This great resource gives teachers tools to implement the four cycles of mathematical argumentation and help students develop a “variety of expertise,” as described in the Standards of Mathematical Practice. As students cycle through the phases, they are guided in building “mathematical authority” as independent thinkers and creators of mathematical ideas. I recommend this book to any teacher who wants to amp up the math discussion in their classroom.

Annette Hilts
Vallejo City Unified School District

Now more than ever, we need to provide all children with opportunities to learn to think critically and participate in thoughtful, productive debate in today’s society. This book translates the mathematical practice of argumentation into a four-stage process that can be applied across a wide range of mathematical content. This process utilizes an innovative, research-based approach based on improv games that opens access for all students to participate in the process of mathematical argumentation. Finally, there is a practical guide for making argumentation an everyday practice in mathematics classrooms!

Kristen Bieda
Michigan State University

Share This: