Back, Jenni; Joubert, Marie; De Geest, Els; Hirst, Christine and Sutherland, Ros
Reflecting on practice in Early Years settings: developing teachers' understandings of children's early mathematics.
In: British Society for Research in Learning Mathematics (BSRLM) Day Conference, 28 Feb 2009, Cambridge, UK.
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This paper presents findings of the (Researching Effective CPD in Mathematics Education (RECME) project which was set up in order to investigate, amongst other things, the interrelated factors that contribute to ‘effective’ CPD for teachers of mathematics. The focus in this presentation is on a CPD initiative that involved a network of teachers and early years practitioners. The Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) covers the care and education of children from birth to seven years old and the place of mathematics in these setting has historically been problematic (Gifford 2005); (Griffiths 1994; Moyles 1994); we suggest this makes this initiative particularly interesting. During meetings, which involved practitioners from a variety if settings, participants carefully considered children's mathematical work, especially their spontaneous mathematical graphics (Worthington and Carruthers 2003). This focus led the practitioners on to consider the ways in which they might support the children's mathematical development in the Early Years Foundation Stage settings. We suggest that the professional development of the participants occurred through this collaborative work on thinking about and discussing children's mathematics.
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