Publication Date


Document Type


First Advisor

Merritt, James||Coffield, William H.||Binter, Alfred R.

Degree Name

M.S. (Master of Science)

Legacy Department

School of Education


Arithmetic--Study and teaching


The Problem: Instruction in arithmetic in the schools of the Hmar people in Northeast India, despite the efforts of many dedicated teachers, is largely of a primitive and improvised nature. This study examinee the history and culture of this area in an effort to provide background Material for a program of positive reform in the light of American principles of mathematics instruction which were extant before the advent of "newer math." Method end Content: The general social, economic and political needs of the Hmar Area are examined in the light of the particular history of this area and the history of India in general. The Bear area was introduced to Christian Mission education in 1910 and the mission pattern currently exists alongside the state schools of the newly-independent nation of India. A revised conception of administration and supervision is urgently needed as a general context for any instructional improvement. This study proposes administrative reorganization and also indicates the imperative need for reforms in teacher education. The Hmar area is described as one in which even young men can remember animal sacrifices as religious rites. The existing schools are described in general, and the existing curriculum in arithmetic is described in detail. The existing arithmetic curriculum is an unwieldy compilation of cumbersome mathematical tasks which discourage most children. The methods are largely rote. A newer plan is proposed which takes the beat from such American authors as Clark, Morton and Spitzer. Further, the American materials are adapted to the culture of Bear children, primarily by means of indicating realistic number situations arising out of a tribal culture in the process of becoming integrated into the industrial age.


Includes bibliographical references.


68 pages




Northern Illinois University

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