International Workshop
Trisomy 21, Mathematics and Thinking

TR21 MaTh inking

Main Speakers

Alicia Bruno Castañeda (España)

Professor of Mathematical Analysis at Universidad de La Laguna.

She has collaborated with the Asociación Tinerfeña de Trisómicos 21 since 2003 with the purpose of reflecting upon how to deal with the teaching of Mathematics to both children and youngsters with Trisomy 21 and prepare teaching material and itineraries that are appropriate for them.
She has also collaborated with researchers from the Computer Science Department of Universidad de La Laguna with the purpose of design computer tools for learning and reinforcement of logical and numerical concepts associated with the official curriculum guidelines for Preschool and Primary by the Ministry of Education.
Her research focuses on the understanding of the concept of number, the basic operations such as addition and subtraction and more recently the understanding of the decimal numeric system by people with Trisomy 21.

Barbara Clarke (Australia).

Associate Professor in Mathematics Education.

The major focus of her writing and research has been concerned with mathematics teachers, their practice and their professional development. Her PhD research related to the challenges for teachers as they implemented an innovative mathematics curriculum and the impact on their practice. Dr Clarke has a research interest in teachers and professional development, and makes regular presentations at professional conferences and teacher professional development sessions. She has also been involved in a number of consultancies and projects working directly with teachers.
She is an active member of the International Down Syndrome Organization.

Educating learners with Down Syndrome (2014). Routledge, New York.

Rhonda Faragher (Australia).

Senior Lecturer. University of Queensland, Brisbane. School of Education.

Dr Rhonda Faragher is a senior lecturer in Inclusive and Special Education within the School of Education. She has internationally recognized expertise in the mathematics education of learners with Down syndrome. In her research and teaching, she works to improve the educational outcomes of students who have difficulties learning mathematics, for whatever reason, including through educational disadvantage. Beyond mathematics education, she has expertise in inclusive education in a range of contexts, including secondary classrooms.
She collaborates with Dr Clarke in a research project on Mathematical development of children with Down Syndrome.
She is an active member of the International Down Syndrome Organization.
She has published the most recent book on research around Teaching children with Down Syndrome, with full chapter devoted to Mathematics.

Educating learners with Down Syndrome (2014). Routledge, New York.

Karen Fuson (USA)

Professor Emerita, Learning Sciences. Northwestern University, Evanston

She has been a member of the National Research Council’s Mathematics Learning Study Committee and author of the K-6 math program Math Expressions published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt.  She is co-author on five of the NCTM grade-level books for teachers about the focal points (PK, K, G1, G2, G5).  She has worked on the Common Core State Standards-Math and on the learning progressions for these standards and advised PARCC and Smarter Balance on their math test design and items. For 50 years she has studied how children understand math ideas, designed teaching materials based on how children learn and understand, and worked in schools to help teachers teach in new ways to support all children to learn. She is the author of Children´s counting and concepts of number, a book which has inspired further researches.

Elena Gil Clemente.

Ph.D. in Mathematics. Associate Professor at Universidad de Zaragoza.

She obtained her Ph.D. in 2016 for her research on "Mathematics Teaching on children with Down Syndrome based on an integrated perspective of Elementary Arithmetics and Geometry"
She leads a research team of professors at the University of Zaragoza with the purpose of bringing practical teaching ideas to introduce children with trisomy 21 in the study of Mathematics.

Ana Millán Gasca (Italy).

Professor of Mathematics. Roma Tre University, Rome (Italy), Department of Education.

As a Historian of Mathematics, Ana has focused her research on the history of Mathematical Teaching to Children during the XIX and XX centuries. From this historical-epistemological perspective, she has founded and still leads the Laboratory "Mathematics for Elementary Level" at the University Roma Tre, where teaching methods and strategies are developed based on the phenomenology of intelligence and children expressiveness (Geometric intuition and mimesis).

Among others, she is author of two books on a historical and practical approach to Mathematics Teaching:

(2012) Pensare in matemática. Zanichelli. Bologna. Junto con Giorgio Israel.

(2015) Numeri e forme. Zanichelli, Bologna

Elisabetta Monari (Italy).

Ph.D. in Mathematics, MSc in Psychology, MBPsS. Senior Researcher. University of Padua. Department of Mathematics

She has a broad experience as a researcher in Mathematics Teaching for people with Down Syndrome. In her research papers she calls for the need to a fresh start different from Arithmetics in Mathematics Teaching for people with Down Syndrome with supporting evidence teaching Algebra to teenagers.

Learning mathematics at school... and later on (2002). Down syndrome News and Update 2 (1), pp 19-23

Algebra and problem-solving in Down syndrome: a study with 15 teenagers(2010). European Journal of Special Needs Education, 25(1), pp 13 - 29.

Jill Porter (Great Britain),

Professor of Education at the University of Reading (Great Britain).

She is a member of the International Association for the Scientific Study of Intellectual Disability and Member of Special Interest Research Group on Profound and Complex Difficulties. Her research field ranks from the collection and responses to disability data in different cultures and contexts; Policy, pedagogy and curriculum for children and young people with complex learning difficulties; the organization of inclusive and special schooling; the early Mathematical development and learning; or research methodologies and special populations.

André Zimpel (Germany).

M.Sc. Rehabilitation Psychology and Special Needs Education. Professor for Learning and Development. University of Hamburg, Germany

Author of several books in German as a result of his broad and deep research on numerous people with trisomy 21 in Europe.
In his latest book, also published in English, he summarizes his ideas and makes a plea advocating for the need of a new perspective based on neurodiversity to address special education.

Trisomy 21: what we can learn from people with Down syndrome (2016) Bristol, CT, USA: Vandenhoeck Ruprecht GmbH&Co.