for the learning of mathematics

an international journal of mathematics education

Sean Chorney - Vol. 37 Num. 3 (2017)
 Circles, materiality and movement


This paper approaches the concept of the circle through the framework of mathematics-as-becoming. This paper focuses specifically on how a concept can be thought of as a process, and on the implications that this might have for mathematics learning. Contrary to long-standing assumptions about mathematical concepts as ideal, inert, Platonic forms, a process-oriented framework sees the circle originating from the animation of a life force. Temporality and mobility thus become key aspects of mathematical concepts. Indeed, using Ingold’s notion of meshwork, I argue that circles materialize from movement; they are perhaps better thought of as verbs than as nouns.