Enter your mobile number below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.
Getting the download link through email is temporarily not available. Please check back later.

  • Apple
  • Android
  • Windows Phone
  • Android

To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.

Qty:1
FREE Shipping on orders with at least $25 of books.
Only 1 left in stock (more on the way).
Ships from and sold by Amazon.com. Gift-wrap available.
The Glass Wall: Why Mathe... has been added to your Cart
FREE Shipping on orders over $25.
Condition: Used: Good
Comment: (PAPER BACK) The book shows normal wear and tear. All shipping handled by Amazon. Prime eligible when you order from us!
Have one to sell? Sell on Amazon
Flip to back Flip to front
Listen Playing... Paused   You're listening to a sample of the Audible audio edition.
Learn more
See all 2 images

The Glass Wall: Why Mathematics Can Seem Difficult Paperback – July 1, 2002

4.4 out of 5 stars 5 customer reviews

See all 4 formats and editions Hide other formats and editions
Price
New from Used from
Paperback
"Please retry"
$23.95
$8.45 $6.95

Homework help
Connect to an expert tutor and get the help you need. Learn more
$23.95 FREE Shipping on orders with at least $25 of books. Only 1 left in stock (more on the way). Ships from and sold by Amazon.com. Gift-wrap available.
click to open popover

Frequently Bought Together

  • The Glass Wall: Why Mathematics Can Seem Difficult
  • +
  • The Book of Learning and Forgetting
Total price: $49.55
Buy the selected items together


Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

"Mathematics isn't necessarily complicated or difficult, nor is it something that is accessible only to an intellectual elite. Mathematics should be open to everyone, provided no unnecessary obstacles are encountered." -- From The Glass Wall: Why Mathematics Can Seem Difficult

About the Author

Frank Smith has been a professor at the Ontario Institute for Studies in Education, the University of Toronto, the University of Victoria, British Columbia, and the University of the Witwatersrand, South Africa. He holds a Ph.D. from Harvard University. A number of his books and professional articles have become classics among educators.
NO_CONTENT_IN_FEATURE

New York Times best sellers
Browse the New York Times best sellers in popular categories like Fiction, Nonfiction, Picture Books and more. See more

Product Details

  • Paperback: 176 pages
  • Publisher: Teachers College Press; illustrated edition edition (July 1, 2002)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0807742414
  • ISBN-13: 978-0807742419
  • Product Dimensions: 6.2 x 0.5 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 9.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,118,979 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

5 star
80%
4 star
0%
3 star
0%
2 star
20%
1 star
0%
See all 5 customer reviews
Share your thoughts with other customers

Top Customer Reviews

By Julie Brennan on August 7, 2006
Format: Paperback
Negative reviewers seem to enjoy taking pot shots at this author without researching who he is or where he is coming from. Frank Smith is a highly regarded educator, researcher, author and speaker. He has written many articles and books on learning in general, as well as reading, math and learning disability issues. A minute or two on Google would yield sufficient answers to the questions posed.

This book has been enormously helpful to me as a home educator and part time teacher of mathematics, to understand the history of how mathematics developed, the complexity involved in mathematical concepts we tend to take for granted as being "simple", and why not every child seems to grasp ideas we consider to be simple on the timetable set for them by typical scope and sequence math.

I did not read this book to see if an author could prove a "thesis" to my satisfaction. I read it to try to understand why my oldest child seemed to have difficulty learning math in his elementary school years, and years of networking with other parents showed me his problems were common to certain types of learners. My son has now gone on to high school and excels at math. This book helped me as a parent and educator mentor his math learning in a way that facilitated his success.

Whether you agree or not with every idea he presents, it is thought provoking and will provide insight in how humans developed and process mathematical thought.
1 Comment 20 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Paperback
I read this short little book from beginning to end, savoring and thinking my way through the chapters one after another. I wanted to experience the enlightenment of getting behind thinking (in mathematics) the way Frank Smith intended. The Glass Wall provided a delightful journey of looking at math from the inside out.
Now I'm thinking differently about things I already knew about numbers, and have an understanding about math education based not on pedagogy but on how math works.
As a literacy consultant I am always looking for materials and readings to bridge the subject domains, for teachers and students. I think this book would help any teacher look at the thinking of math, which would inform the doing of math. That has been the trick to improving teaching reading (understanding what good readers do and making visible reading moves) and I think this could contribute in the same way to math instruction. This book does not explain, so much as it leads the reader to experience mathematical thinking, making special note of where the natural world and language part company with the world of math, which many people don't acknowledge.
What made me realize the impact this book had on my everyday thinking was fishing coins out of my purse to pay the toll for the Mass Pike and, in the crush of traffic, thinking of the units of money the coins were.
Norene Rolle
Comment 8 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Hardcover
Wow! This is a terrific book on mathematical thinking. It is very readable, full of insights, aha's, and quotable thoughts like, "The heights of mathematics are scaled by standing on tables". This is a must read for classroom teachers and essential to student teachers. Frank Smith is an outstanding educational theorist, and his newest offering is a worthy addition to educational libraries.
Comment 7 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Just what I needed for my class! Great condition!
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Paperback
The thesis of this book is that math can't be truly understood through language. The language of mathematics is numbers, and it can only be truly understood through numbers.

While that is true, language is an effective means of teaching people how to think about the numbers. Also, despite Frank Smith's thesis, he spends almost the entire book using language rather than numbers to explain mathematics. I would say he proves his own thesis wrong, except he doesn't explain mathematics that well, either.

It did get me thinking about math in terms of how the numbers interact, vaguely, because he stated that. That helped a little, even if he didn't elaborate on how exactly one should think about math in terms of numbers rather than language. That's why I give it an extra star.

Skip onto something more truly informative.
2 Comments 3 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse

Set up an Amazon Giveaway

The Glass Wall: Why Mathematics Can Seem Difficult
Amazon Giveaway allows you to run promotional giveaways in order to create buzz, reward your audience, and attract new followers and customers. Learn more about Amazon Giveaway
This item: The Glass Wall: Why Mathematics Can Seem Difficult