What does the research tell us about how children best learn mathematics?

Baroody, Lai & Mix [2006. The development of young childrens number and operation sense and its implications for early childhood education. In B. Spodek, & O. N. Saracho (Eds.), Handbook of research on the education of young children (2nd Ed., pp. 187-221). NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum.] differentiate between four different learning approaches: direct instruction, guided adult-initiated play, guided child-initiated play, and free play. The purpose of this article is to clarify which learning approach researchers in the field of mathematics recommend for mathematics learning in children younger than 6 years. We will do this by illustrating and comparing the theories of the four teaching approaches. The review of the theories shows that research supports a combination of guided adult-initiated and child-initiated approaches in mathematics learning, but that different approaches can have a positive effect in certain conditions. © 2019, © 2019 Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group.

Baroody, Lai & Mix [2006. The development of young childrens number and operation sense and its implications for early childhood education. In B. Spodek, & O. N. Saracho (Eds.), Handbook of research on the education of young children (2nd Ed., pp. 187-221). NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum.] differentiate between four different learning approaches: direct instruction, guided adult-initiated play, guided child-initiated play, and free play. The purpose of this article is to clarify which learning approach researchers in the field of mathematics recommend for mathematics learning in children younger than 6 years. We will do this by illustrating and comparing the theories of the four teaching approaches. The review of the theories shows that research supports a combination of guided adult-initiated and child-initiated approaches in mathematics learning, but that different approaches can have a positive effect in certain conditions. © 2019, © 2019 Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group.

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