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Reasons why maths is important for children

By gathering information into a folio, you are demonstrating an ability to identify, evaluate and transmit ideas about effective engaging and encouraging mathematical experiences for children.

This assessment requires to track your reasons for including specific evidence through adding a reflective dialogue. Your folio should not just be a collection of resources, however, if academic underpinning is not evident you will not pass this assessment.:

Evidence

https://www.education.com/magazine/article/math-matters/

This hyperlink takes into consideration why maths is important for kids and what the reasons that children should study the same.

In day to day life, mathematics is one of the major subjects which are used by the ids to perform their desired activities. As most of the parents say, “knowing maths will help to keep all your doors open in future”. There are two main reasons as to why maths matters i.e. to have success in day to day affairs & the child should have proficiency in the subject matter.

• In order to have success in day to day affairs, one must be proficient enough in solving the problems in a well efficient manner. Solving a mathematics problem will help the children to learn analytical as well as critical thinking skills (Geary, Hoard, Nugent & Bailey, 2013).

• If the child does not have proficiency in basic mathematics, he or she can have trouble in the long run. For example, if the car has 3 gallons of petrol and you have to travel thirty miles. Will you be able to make? If the person does not know basic mathematics such type of situation will lead to long walk till home. Another example to showcase why mathematics matter would be if you are visiting Toronto and the average temperature of the same is 30 degrees. Should you pack heavy boots or slippers? 20 friends go out for a dinner. The total bill is $160 and you want give 15% to the waiter as a tip. Then how does each one owe.

Evidence

https://www.educationworld.com/a_curr/mathchat/mathchat019.shtml

This hyperlink takes into consideration how maths connects in the real world.

It has been said that, a person’s success in life totally depends upon his or her ability to solve the problems. Therefore, kids have a class in their school which helps them to learn & think logically as well as practice the application of the same. Solving a mathematics problem will help the students to think various ways to solve the problem implement a solution & evaluate the results.

Maths in real world can be quite helpful for the kids to understand & solve certain problems. For example, one of the best ways to study Rational Numbers is with the help of Pizza. There is one whole pizza i.e. 1. This pizza can be cut into a half. There will be two halves. This pizza can be cut into a quarter i.e. 4 pieces of a pizza. Hence, he main question lies is what is that quantity which when multiplied by 4 gives 1 whole of pizza i.e. ¼. Same way, what is that quantity which when 2 gives 1 whole of pizza i.e. ½. Hence, even 120 friends can have an equal slice of pizza cut out from one pizza. Similarly, if someone wants to distribute 2 pizzas amongst 15 friends then it would be 2/15. Hence, we can teach the students by this that rational numbers consist of two integers i.e. a dividend and a divisor (a/b = c where; c = quotient) (Lee, 2013).

Linking maths to real-world problems

Evidence

https://www.naeyc.org/files/naeyc/file/positions/psmath.pdf

This hyperlink takes into consideration a link between mathematics & early childhood. According to NAEYC a solid foundation shall be laid for the kids in order to have proficiency in the subject matter.

Young learners are the future leaders of any country. Therefore, a strong mathematics foundation shall be laid by the same to provide high quality, sensible & accessible maths education from the start i.e. kinder garten or pre nursery schools. In such circumstances, good teaching practices & research based curriculum shall be experienced. In order make this possible, high quality polices & procedures, well-educated teachers (with in depth knowledge) and adequate resources shall be made available so as to succeed in the challenging work. It shall be seen that, programs established in kindergartens shall be such which caters to the need of childhood learners. In the initial stages of a child i.e. first six years a fair understanding regarding the same shall be depicted (Richardson, 2000). This will help the child to get acquainted with basic mathematical concepts as well as the early mathematical needs. In this regard, the teachers shall guide the students & help them to make connections with other subjects & mathematics. In the initial stages of life, kids shall be have a control over numbers & problem solving skills.

Children use various maths skills in early days of their childhood. Such types of skills are necessary for the kids as they would be ready to go to the school. Early mathematical skills which would be required in the later stages of elementary school are recognizing numeric, depth knowledge of shapes, color & size and identifying more or less. Some examples to develop young mathematicians have been described as follows:

• Play with the kids with the help of stacking blocks. For instance, if the kid places two square blocks one on another and then a triangle on the top. He or she will not be able to place any other block on the top it. At this point, the parent shall help the child by telling his or her that, if she takes off the triangle block and used a square shaped block then she can put some more blocks (Paladino, 2008).

• Another way of developing a young mathematician would be to read counting book to the child. As the parent reads the counting book, the child shall be encouraged to say it aloud. For example, when the parent recites the counting i.e. 4, 5, 6 “what comes next”? Such type of games will help the child to remember the counting. If the child has a strong grasping power, then the game shall be made more advanced by stretching the numbers from 10 to 100 (National Research Council., 2009).

• One of the ways to develop a young mathematician can be done by laundry learning. The household jobs can be made ultimate fun when playing with the kids. While the mother sorts out the laundry, ask the child to make a different pile of socks & shirts. Ask him or her which pile is bigger. What is the total number of shirts & socks? Ask him to make pair of the socks. Such type of an activity will help the child to upgrade his matching as well as counting skills (National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC), 2009).

Mathematics and early childhood education

Evidence

https://www.primaryresources.co.uk/maths/maths.htm

This hyperlink takes into consideration a link between Maths & primary school. A good understanding of basic mathematics shall be practiced in the initial years of the child.

Learning mathematics has been referred to as one of the key areas in education system in the 21st Century. It shall be seen that, a highly skilled & educated manpower would be regarded as a support system for any economy. A strong as well as in depth knowledge in mathematics will help the kids to have a bright future in the years to come. A good understanding of basic mathematics shall be practiced in the initial years of the child. By basic mathematics we mean, calculation, addition, subtraction, measurements, graphical representation & interpretations of the same (Kang, DeChenne & Smith, 2012). In the 21st century, these have been referred to as one of the main competency which the student shall imbibe in order to have a brighter future in the long run. It is the goal of the education authorities to ensure that, highest possible mastery shall be obtained by the students. Mathematics shall be referred to as one of the main subject in the curriculum. At the primary level, students are made comfortable with pre numeracy skills, match the column, comparing & sorting. At the P1 level, the students would be introduced with the Foundation of mathematics & new concepts of the same (Maoto, 2014). The main aim at the primary level is to inculcate the students with an analytical attitude, metacognition, processes & concepts to solve the mathematical problems.

Some games for developing mathematical skills for kids in the primary school have been discussed in this section. They are as follows:

• Pupils shall be given a task to make his or her own diary by filling the time slots & what are they supposed to do in that particular hour of the day. This will help the students to have a better understanding of time as well as mark a difference between weekday & weekend diary (Jordan, Kaplan, Ramineni, & Locuniak, 2009). Worksheets shall be distributed amongst the Pupils consisting of various one line questions such as: How many months are there in a year. How many days are there in a week? How many days are in the month of February (in a leap year)? What is a leap year? It is 3’o clock by the watch. What would be the time after 2 hours? What is half of 11? There are 5 seeds in a packet. I want to grow 23 flowers. How many packets of seeds shall I buy? There are 2 squirrels and 12 peanuts. How many peanuts will each squirrel get? ().Geary, Hoard, Nugent, & Bailey, 2013).

• Some other games which shall be used to develop mathematics skills amongst the kids are make a worksheet consisting of ordering numbers till 20 (for example: place the numbers from smallest to biggest – 08, 03,18), write numbers in figures (for example: seventeen), addition of numbers up to 10 (for example: 6+7 = ?), subtraction of numbers up to 10 (for example: 8-4 = ?) and word problems to instill better problem solving & critical thinking amongst the child (for example; Tom has 5 oranges. He bought 5 more. How many oranges does he have in total?) Example of some word problems are: Find the sum of 57+123. Difference between 123 & 65 (Duncan et al. (2007). John stays 40kms away from the church. Abbi stays 45kms away from the church. How far do they stay from one another? Paul sold 56 packets of biscuits. He sold 44 more packs of biscuits on Tuesday. How many packets did he sell in total? There are 90 passengers in the bus. 47 passengers got down the next stop. How many passengers are there in the bus? Diana is 20 years old. Her mother is 30 years elder to her. How old is Diana’s mother? (Dougherty, Flores, Louis, & Sophian, 2010).

• Lastly, a vibrant printed worksheet shall be circulated consisting of varied color balls amongst the kids regarding fill in the missing number. The empty box shall be made full to finish the sums and complete the number line. For example: 2+8 =? 3+ ? = 5, ?+8 = 8, 7+? = 10, 4+? = 9 (Deary, Strand, Smith & Fernandes, 2007). Pupils shall be provided with skills to solve problems, handle data, interpret data, perform basic measurements, perform simple calculation (addition, multiplication & subtraction) and read the number line (number & number system). For example, solve word problems & real life problems, word problems clubbed with a football match, division problems, application of the BODMAS rule, multi-step problems, puzzles & problems, true an false statements, traditional maths story, doubling word problems, lengthy word problems, mixed word problems, weighty problems and simple fractions word problems (Copley, 2004). For example, Tom travels by a bus which was exactly half full. The people allowed to board the bus is 54. How many passengers were there on the bus? Holly was hungry. He has $2 in his pocket. What all this can he purchase Hot dog $1.05, Soup $1.25, Burger $1.35 and Finger chips $0.65? Paul came back home at 19.30 hours. How long was he away from his house? (Copley, 2000).

Mathematics and primary education

Evidence

https://www.education.com/magazine/article/math-matters/

This hyperlink takes into consideration why maths is important for kids and what the reasons that children should study the same.

Mathematics & learning environment shall portray the creativity in the heart of mathematics. The class room learning environment can be referred to as highly beneficial for the kids & acts a third teacher for the same. Such type of learning environment will help the children to see mathematics as a sensible & useful subject (Copley, 1999). It can be seen that, various materials shall be used in order to support the mathematics learning environment.

Several supporting material shall be used in the pre-primary schools to make mathematics an interesting subject. Some of the materials used to support mathematics learning are as follows:

• Use of board games to inculcate counting & addition and subtraction

• Games such as snakes & ladders, Connect four are the two main games which will help to support mathematics learning and social learning as well (Colombo, 1986).

• Use of cards game which will help the kids to understand numbers represent more & less than 10 (Clements, Sarama, Spitler, Lange & Wolfe, 2011).

• Use of various materials such as strings, ribbon, ruler, balls of various sizes, blocks of varied colors to depict various sizes i.e. short, tall, big, small, understating of the colors etc (Clements & Sarama, 2008).

• Use of number puzzle will help the kids to fill in the missing number. This will help to encourage better problem solving skills amongst the students (Clement, Sarama & DiBiase, 2004).

• Various types of blocks games & building material blocks are available for children. They shall be used by the students to build complicated structures or different sizes & shapes (Clements & Conference Working Group, 2004).

• Use the recycled items such as waste paper, sharpener waste, eggs shells, tubes, lids, cartons, etc to build buildings or other creative shapes. Such type of activities will help to develop young mathematicians as well as devise new strategies for problem solving (Caldwell, Karp & Bay-Williams, 2011).

Evidence

https://www.educ.ethz.ch/pro/litll/oecdbuch.pdf

This hyperlink takes into consideration what Maths is in the 21st Century & how Maths has evolved in the years to come.

With the change in time, Maths is not only taken as a subject it is rather taken as a critical component of success in the years to come. Therefore, many educators are working on reworking the mathematics strategies and ensure that, the students develop such skills in an effective manner. In the 21st century, mathematics is taken as a subject, who keeps in mind the various aspects of life such as paying off the bills, use of technology, etc (Bowman, Donovan & Burns, 2001). Mathematics has been referred to as a subject who shows how other subjects shall be integrated with the same. In today’s century, knowledge is not only confined to what students know but also what they can do with the knowledge they possess(Ball & Cohen, 1999).

ICT has been referred to anything which provides a source of information to communicate with one another. In previous centuries, ICT was referred to as a term which depicts computer hardware, computer software, programming games, toys, video cameras etc. There are three main reasons as to why ICT matters in early childhood education. They have been depicted as follows:

• ICT helps as well as supports the entire education sector with the help of integration of various technologies. Integration of ICT will help to formulate curriculum, various education policies, etc (Bailey, Watts, Littlefield & Geary, 2014).

• ICT helps to provide new opportunities as well as strengthens the early childhood aspects (Bateman, O’Mara, & Loughlin, 2015)-.

• ICT has an effect on the environment as well as surrounds the young children’s learning phase (Aunola, Leskinen, Lerkkanen & Nurmi, 2004).

Reflective dialogue

References

Aunola, K., Leskinen, E., Lerkkanen, M.-L., & Nurmi, J.-E. (2004). Developmental dynamics of math performance from pre-school to Grade 2. Journal of Educational Psychology, 96, 699-713.

Bailey, D. H., Watts, T. W., Littlefield, A. K., & Geary, D. C. (2014). State and trait effects on individual differences in children’s mathematical development. Psychological Science, 25, 2017-2026.

Ball, D. L., & Cohen, D. K. (1999). Developing practice, developing practitioners: Toward a practice-based theory of professional education. In L. Darling-Hammond & G. Sykes (Eds.),Teaching as the learning profession, pp. 3–32. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass.

Bateman, D., O’Mara, J., & Loughlin, J. (2015). Centre for Research in Educational Futures and Innovation. Faculty Of Arts And Education, Deakin University.

Bowman, B. T., Donovan, M. S., & Burns, M. S., (Eds.).  (2001).  Eager to learn:  Educating our preschoolers.  Washington, DC:  National Academy of Sciences.

Caldwell, J. H., Karp, K., & Bay-Williams, J. M. (2011). Developing essential understanding of addition and subtraction for teaching mathematics in prekindergarten–Grade 2. Reston, VA: National Council of Teachers of Mathematics.

Clements, D. H., & Conference Working Group. (2004). Part 1: Major themes and recommendations.In D. H. Clements, J. Sarama, & A.-M. DiBiase (Eds.), Engaging young children in Mathematics: Standards for early childhood mathematics education, pp. 7–76. Mahwah, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum.

Clements, D. H., Sarama, J., & DiBiase, A.-M. (Eds.). (2004). Engaging young children in mathematics: Standards for early childhood mathematics. Mahwah, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum.

Clements, D. H., & Sarama, J. (2008). Experimental Evaluation of the Effects of a Research-Based Preschool Mathematics Curriculum. American Educational Research Journal, 45, 443-494.

Clements, D. H., Sarama, J., Spitler, M. E., Lange, A. A., & Wolfe, C. B. (2011). Mathematics learned by young children in an intervention based on learning trajectories: A large-scale cluster randomized trial. Journal for Research in Mathematics Education, 42, 127-166.

Colombo, U. (1986). Research, innovation and renewal in the chemical industry. Futures, 18(2), 170-177. doi:10.1016/0016-3287(86)90096-0

Copley, J. V. (Ed.). (1999). Mathematics in the early years. Reston, VA: National Council of Teachers of Mathematics.

Copley, J. V. (2000). The young child and mathematics. Reston, VA, and Washington, DC: National Council of Teachers of Mathematics and the National Association for the Education of Young Children.

Copley, J. V. (2004). Showcasing mathematics for the young child: Activities for three-, four-, and five-year-olds. Reston, VA: National Council of Teachers of Mathematics.

Deary, I. J., Strand, S., Smith, P., & Fernandes, C. (2007). Intelligence and educational achievement. Intelligence, 35, 13-21.

Diezmann, C., & Yelland, N. J.  (2000).  Developing mathematical literacy in the early childhood years.    In Yelland, N. J. (Ed.), Promoting meaningful learning:  Innovations in educating early childhood professionals.  (pp.47-58). Washington, DC:  National Association for the Education of Young Children.

Dougherty, B. J., Flores, A., Louis, E., & Sophian, C. (2010). Developing essential understanding of number and numeration for teaching mathematics in prekindergarten–Grade 2. Reston, VA: National Council of Teachers of Mathematics.

Duncan, G. J., Dowsett, C. J., Claessens, A., Magnuson, K., Huston, A. C., Klebanov, P., et al. (2007). School readiness and later achievement. Developmental Psychology, 43, 1428-1446.

Fuchs, L. S., Schumacher, R. F., Long, J., Namkung, J., Hamlett, C. L., Cirino, P. T., Jordan, N. C., Siegler, R. S., Gersten, R., & Changas, P. (2013). Improving at-risk learners’ understanding of fractions. Journal of Educational Psychology, 105, 683-703.

Geary, D. C., Hoard, M. K., Nugent, L., & Bailey, D. H. (2013). Adolescents' functional numeracy is predicted by their school entry number system knowledge. PLoS ONE, 8, e54651.

Jordan, N. C., Kaplan, D., Ramineni, C., & Locuniak, M. N. (2009). Early math matters: kindergarten number competence and later mathematics outcomes. Developmental Psychology, 45, 850-867.

Kang, N., DeChenne, S., & Smith, G. (2012). Inquiry Learning of High School Students Through a Problem-Based Environmental Health Science Curriculum. School Science And Mathematics,112(3), 147-158. doi:10.1111/j.1949-8594.2011.00128.x

Lee, J. (2013). College for all: Gaps between desirable and actual P–12 math achievement trajectories for college readiness. Educational Researcher, 42(2), 78–88.

Maoto, S. (2014). Creating a Child Friendly Psychosocial Learning Environment in Mathematics: A Case of Problem Solving in Grade 6. Mediterranean Journal Of Social Sciences. doi:10.5901/mjss.2014.v5n23p1048

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National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC) & National Association of Early Childhood Specialists in State Departments of Education (NAECS/SDE). (2003). Early childhood curriculum, assessment, and program evaluation: Building an effective, accountable system in programs for children birth through age 8. Joint Position Statement. Washington, DC: NAEYC.

National Research Council. (2009). Mathematics learning in early childhood: Paths toward excellence and equity. Committee on Early Childhood Mathematics, C. Cross, T. Woods, & H. Paladino, A. (2008). Creating an Interactive and Responsive Teaching Environment to Inspire Learning.Journal Of Marketing Education, 30(3), 185-188. doi:10.1177/0273475308318075

Richardson, K. (2000). Mathematical standards for pre-kindergarten through grade 2. Champaign, IL: University of Illinois.

Rothwell, R. (1981). Current innovation: Policy, management and research options. Futures, 13(3), 226-227. doi:10.1016/0016-3287(81)90091-4

Schweingruber (Eds.). Center for Education, Division of Behavioral and Social Sciences and Education. Washington, DC: National Academies Press.

Schneider, M., & Siegler, R. S. (2010). Representations of the magnitudes of fractions. Journal of Experimental Psychology. Human Perception and Performance, 36, 1227-1238.

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