The Innovative Learning of Square and Rectangle using Macanan Traditional Indonesian Game

Padhila Angraini, Rully Charitas Indra Prahmana, Masitah Shahrill


Geometry is one of the essential mathematics materials, such as square and rectangle. However, most elementary school students experience difficulty in understanding it due to the abstractness of the geometric material. Furthermore, teachers teaching in the remote areas of Indonesia still encounter problems exploring this abstract material to make students understand caused by the limited learning resources. On the other hand, students in remote areas are familiar with traditional games, such as Macanan. Hence, the objective of this study is to design learning activities utilizing Macanan game in assisting students understand the concept of the perimeter and area of squares and rectangles for fourth-grade students. A design research approach was implemented and performed at one of the elementary schools in Jambi, Indonesia. The research results presented that Macanan could be a context for a starting point in this learning design of both square and rectangular learning. Employing this context, it would be fun, enjoyable, and easy to understand the perimeter and area of squares and rectangles for students. This game could be a context for teachers in remote areas in teaching geometry and be a reference for identifying other contexts which can make mathematics learning easy in remote areas.


Design Research; Indonesian Traditional Games; Square and Rectangle; Ethnomathematics

Full Text:



Acharya, B. R. (2017). Factors affecting difficulties in learning mathematics by mathematics learners. International Journal of Elementary Education, 6(2), 8-15.

Angraini, P., & Prahmana, R. C. I. (2019). Misconceptions of seventh grade students in solving geometry problem type national examinations. Journal of Physics: Conference Series, 1188(1), 012101.

Bakker, A. (2004). Design research in statistics education–On symbolizing and computer tools. Unpublished Ph.D. Thesis. Utrecht: The Freudenthal Institute.

Chong, M. S. F., & Shahrill, M. (2016). The use of an emerging framework to explore students’ cognitive competency. Indian Journal of Science and Technology, 9(16), 1-12.

Chong, M. S. F., Shahrill, M., & Li, H-C. (2019). The integration of a problem solving framework for Brunei high school mathematics curriculum in increasing student’s affective competency. Journal on Mathematics Education, 10(2), 215-228.

Cozzens, M., & Roberts, F. S. (2020). Introductory college mathematics for the life sciences: Has anything changed? Bulletin of Mathematical Biology, 82, 87.

Dharmamulya, S. (2008). Permainan Tradisional Jawa. Yogyakarta: Kepel Press.

Ernest, P. (2013). The philosophy of mathematics education. The Philosophy of Mathematics Education (pp. 1-330). Taylor and Francis.

Fauziah, A., Putri, R. I. I., Zulkardi, & Somakim. (2018). Primary school student teachers’ perception to Pendidikan Matematika Realistik Indonesia (PMRI) instruction. Journal of Physics: Conference Series, 943(1), 012044.

Febriana, M., Nurkamto, J., Rochsantiningsih, D., & Muhtia, A. (2018). Teaching in rural Indonesian schools: Teachers’ challenges. International Journal of Multicultural and Multireligious Understanding, 5(5), 11-20.

Fitri, N. L., & Prahmana, R. C. I. (2018). Pembelajaran luas segiempat untuk siswa kelas VII menggunakan reallotment activities. Jurnal Review Pembelajaran Matematika, 3(1), 18-28.

Freudenthal, H. (1991). Revisiting Mathematics Education: China Lectures. Dordrecht: Kluwer Academic Publishers.

Graham, K. J., & Fennell, F. S. (2001). Principles and standards for school mathematics and teacher education: Preparing and empowering teachers. School Science and Mathematics, 101(6), 319–327.

Gravemeijer, K. (2020). Educational development and developmental research in mathematics education. Journal for Research in Mathematics Education, 25(5), 443–471.

Gravemeijer, K., & Cobb, P. (2006). Design research from a learning design perspective. In J. van den Akker, K. Gravemeijer, S. McKenney, & N. Nieveen (Eds.), Educational Design Research (pp. 17-51). London: Routledge

Gravemeijer, K., & Doorman, M. (1999). Context problems in realistic mathematics education: A calculus course as an example. Educational Studies in Mathematics, 39(1–3), 111–129.

Gravemeijer, K., & Van Eerde, D. (2009). Design research as a means for building a knowledge base for teachers and teaching in mathematics education. The Elementary School Journal, 109(5), 510-524.

Gunhan, B. C. (2014). A case study on the investigation of reasoning skills in geometry. South African Journal of Education, 34(2), 1-19.

Hadi, S. (2002). Effective teacher professional development for the implementation of realistic mathematics education in Indonesia. Enschede: University of Twente.

Hadi, S. (2017). Pendidikan Matematika Realistik (Teori, Pengembangan dan Implementasinya). Jakarta: PT Raja Grafindo Persada.

Haris, D., & Putri, R. I. I. (2011). The role of context in third graders’ learning of area measurement. Journal on Mathematics Education, 2(1), 55–66.

Haryani, T. M., Putri, R. I. I., & Santoso, B. (2015). Desain pembelajaran dalam memahami konsep luas menggunakan kain motif kotak-kotak di kelas III. Kreano, Jurnal Matematika Kreatif-Inovatif, 6(1), 50-58.

Hendayana, S., Supriatna, A., & Imansyah, H. (2010). Indonesia’s issues and challenges on quality improvement of mathematics and science education. Journal of International Cooperation in Education, 4(2), 41-51. Retrieved from

Jaelani, A., Putri, R. I. I., & Hartono, Y. (2013). Students’ strategies of measuring time using traditional “Gasing” game in third grade of primary school. Journal on Mathematics Education, 4(1), 29-40.

Jones, K., & Tzekaki, M. (2016). Research on the teaching and learning of geometry. In The Second Handbook of Research on the Psychology of Mathematics Education: The Journey Continues (pp. 109-149). Sense Publishers.

Kurniati, M., Arafat, Y., & Mulyadi, M. (2020). Developing teacher’s professionalism to improve the quality of education in remote areas. International Journal of Educational Review, 2(2), 192-202.

Kusumah, Y. S., & Nurhasanah, F. (2017). The endless long-term program of mathematics teacher professional development in Indonesia. In Professional Development of Mathematics Teachers (pp. 33-45). Springer, Singapore.

Laborde, C. (2015). Teaching and Learning Geometry. In The Proceedings of the 12th International Congress on Mathematical Education (pp. 431-436). Springer International Publishing.

Maschietto, M., & Trouche, L. (2010). Mathematics learning and tools from theoretical, historical and practical points of view: The productive notion of mathematics laboratories. ZDM - International Journal on Mathematics Education, 42(1), 33-47.

Muslimin, Putri, R. I. I., & Somakim. (2012). Desain pembelajaran pengurangan bilangan bulat melalui permainan tradisional congklak berbasis pendidikan matematika realistik indonesia di kelas IV sekolah dasar. Kreano, Jurnal Matematika Kreatif-Inovatif, 3(2), 100-112.

Nasrullah & Zulkardi. (2011). Building counting by traditional game: A mathematics program for young children. Journal on Mathematics Education, 2(1), 41-54.

Nasution, M. F., Putri, R. I. I., & Zulkardi. (2018). Rowing sport in learning fractions of the fourth grade students. Journal on Mathematics Education, 9(1), 69-79.

Noto, M. S., Priatna, N., & Dahlan, J. A. (2019). Mathematical proof: The learning obstacles of preservice mathematics teachers on transformation geometry. Journal on Mathematics Education, 10(1), 117-126.

Nurhayati, Marhayani, D. A., Chang, C. H., & Naaranoja, M. (2019). Math anxiety analysis in Indonesian elementary school. In Communications in Computer and Information Science (Vol. 1011, pp. 292-301). Springer Verlag.

Özerem, A. (2012). Misconceptions in geometry and suggested solutions for seventh grade students. Procedia - Social and Behavioral Sciences, 55, 720-729.

Passarella, S. (2021). Emergent modelling to introduce the distributivity property of multiplication: a design research study in a primary school. International Journal of Mathematical Education in Science and Technology, 1-23.

Phoenix, D. (2018). Introductory Mathematics for the Life Sciences. Introductory Mathematics for the Life Sciences. CRC Press.

Phonapichat, P., Wongwanich, S., & Sujiva, S. (2014). An analysis of elementary School Students’ Difficulties in Mathematical Problem Solving. Procedia - Social and Behavioral Sciences, 116, 3169–3174.

Plomp, T., & Nieveen, N. (2013). Educational design research part A: An introduction. The Netherland: SLO, Enschede. Retrieved from

Prahmana, R. C. I. (2017). Design Research (Teori dan Implementasinya: Suatu Pengantar). Jakarta: Rajawali Pers.

Prahmana, R. C. I., Zulkardi, & Hartono, Y. (2012). Learning multiplication using Indonesian traditional game in third grade. Journal on Mathematics Education, 3(2), 115–132.

Prahmana, R. C. I., & D'Ambrosio, U. (2020). Learning geometry and values from patterns: Ethnomathematics on the batik patterns of Yogyakarta, Indonesia. Journal on Mathematics Education, 11(3), 439-456.

Riastuti, N., Mardiyana, M., & Pramudya, I. (2017). Students’ errors in geometry viewed from spatial intelligence. Journal of Physics: Conference Series, 895(1), 012029.

Risdiyanti, I., & Prahmana, R. C. I. (2018). Etnomatematika: Eksplorasi dalam Permainan Tradisional Jawa. Journal of Medives: Journal of Mathematics Education IKIP Veteran Semarang, 2(1), 1-11.

Risdiyanti, I., Prahmana, R. C. I., & Shahrill, M. (2019). The learning trajectory of social arithmetic using an Indonesian traditional game. Elementary Education Online, 18(4), 2094–2108.

Rowland, T. (2012). Contrasting knowledge for elementary and secondary mathematics teaching. For the Learning of Mathematics, 32(1), 16–21.

Sembiring, R. K. (2010). Pendidikan Matematika Realistik Indonesia (PMRI): Perkembangan dan tantangannya. Journal on Mathematics Education, 1(1), 11–16.

Sembiring, R. K., Hadi, S., & Dolk, M. (2008). Reforming mathematics learning in Indonesian classrooms through RME. ZDM - International Journal on Mathematics Education, 40(6), 927–939.

Simonson, M. (2006). Design-based research: Applications for distance education. Quarterly Review of Distance Education, 7(1), vii-viii.

UNESCO. (2008). Developing culturally contextualised mathematics resource materials: capturing local practices of Tamang and Gopali communities, A Report. Kathmandu: Lusha Press.

Van den Akker, J., Gravemeijer, K., McKenney, S., & Nieveen, N. (2006). Educational Design Research. London: Routledge.

Van den Heuvel-Panhuizen, M. (2005). The role of context in assessment problems in mathematics. For the Learning of Mathematics, 25(2), 2–9.

Wahyuni, R. (2014). Students’ Understanding in Identifying Properties of the Square and Rectangle Based on Realistic Mathematics Education. Proceeding the 2nd SEA-DR (pp. 253-262). Palembang: Universitas Sriwijaya.

Wijaya, A. (2008). Design research in Mathematics Education: Indonesian Traditional Games as Means to Support Second graders’ Learning of Linear Measurement. Thesis. Utrecht: Utrecht University.

Zulkardi, & Putri, R. I. I. (2019). New School Mathematics Curricula, PISA and PMRI in Indonesia (pp. 39–49).



  • There are currently no refbacks.

Indexed by:


Southeast Asian Mathematics Education Journal
SEAMEO Regional Centre for QITEP in Mathematics
Jl. Kaliurang Km 6, Sambisari, Condongcatur, Depok, Sleman
Yogyakarta, Indonesia
Telp. +62 274 889955

p-ISSN: 2089-4716 | e-ISSN: 2721-8546

Southeast Asian Mathematics Education Journal is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License

View My Stats

 Supported by: