Early childhood educators’ beliefs about mathematics education for children under three years of age

Amy MacDonald, Samantha McGrath

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Early childhood educators play a central role in fostering children’s mathematics learning; however, few studies have focused on educators’ beliefs about very young children’s capabilities in mathematics. Understanding these beliefs is critical for gaining insight into the mathematics education provided in birth to three settings. In light of this dearth of research, this article presents data from a study of Australian early childhood educators’ beliefs about mathematics education for children under three years of age. 506 educators responded to an online survey which generated both quantitative and qualitative data regarding educators’ beliefs. The findings indicate that this large sample of Australian educators seem to be positive and perceptive about mathematics. The educators demonstrate a good level of recognition of very early mathematical development, and the majority of respondents indicate a belief that children begin exploring a range of mathematical ideas before two years of age. The findings contribute to understandings of early childhood educators’ beliefs regarding mathematics education for children under three years of age and provide positive indications about the quality of mathematics education opportunities for very young children.

Original languageEnglish
JournalInternational Journal of Early Years Education
DOIs
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 08 Aug 2022

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