Bringing families and preschool educators together to support young children's learning through noticing, exploring and talking about mathematics

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Abstract

This chapter draws on findings from the longitudinal evaluation of the Australian initiative Let’s Count (Perry and Gervasoni 2012) to consider how the process of bringing families and pre-school educators together, with a focus on mathematics, enhanced young children’s mathematics learning. The data examined is parent and educator interview data that explores the effectiveness of the Let’s Count approach. The findings, sustained over two separate data collection periods over 2 years, provide clear evidence that Let’s Count is at least as successful as other mathematics learning programs in terms of children’s mathematical knowledge and skills outcomes, and suggest in respect to some mathematical concepts that Let’s Count may be a superior approach. Themes emerging from interviews with parents highlight that the parents valued the educators talking to them about ideas and suggestions regarding the type of activities that are rich sources of mathematics learning. It many ways these discussions provided parents with prompts, inspiration, encouragement and confidence. The interview data also highlight that sustaining communication between the parents and educators across the year was challenging for some. Recommendations arising from the Let’s Count Longitudinal Evaluation for future initiatives include: encouraging parents to support their children to notice, explore and discuss the mathematics that is part of everyday experiences; enabling sustained communication opportunities for parents to discuss the mathematics they notice their child using and exploring; and providing suggestions about how to extend this learning.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationEngaging Families as Children's First Mathematics Educators
EditorsSivanes Phillipson, Ann Gervasoni, Peter Sullivan
Place of PublicationSingapore
PublisherSpringer
Pages199-216
Number of pages18
ISBN (Electronic)9789811025532
ISBN (Print)9789811025518
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2017

Publication series

NameEarly Mathematics Learning and Development
PublisherSpringer

Cite this

Gervasoni, A. (2017). Bringing families and preschool educators together to support young children's learning through noticing, exploring and talking about mathematics. In S. Phillipson, A. Gervasoni, & P. Sullivan (Eds.), Engaging Families as Children's First Mathematics Educators (pp. 199-216). (Early Mathematics Learning and Development). Springer. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-981-10-2553-2_12