This topic uses an inquiry approach to examine theory and practice in mathematics in early childhood education. Stated simply, mathematics is the study of quantity, structure, space and change. It includes "numeracy" which can be thought of as the mathematics that we use in everyday living. The topic explores the question of how the powerful mathematical proficiencies exhibited by children in their early years, can be recognised and developed within a child-centered approach to learning. It also explores the mathematical competencies needed by early childhood educators to effectively sustain and enhance these proficiencies.
Modules in this topic include theories and research in children's learning of mathematics, mathematical concepts available to young children, challenging children to think mathematically, catering for individual learning, planning for and assessing mathematical learning and creating a supportive learning environment.
This topic aims to: