Icon for: Amy Parks

AMY PARKS

CAREER: Examining the role of context in the mathematical learning of young children
Michigan State University
Public Discussion
  • Icon for: Vivian Guilfoy

    Vivian Guilfoy

    Facilitator
    May 11, 2015 | 09:01 a.m.

    “Seeing” mathematics in play is an excellent idea that has potential for early childhood teachers and for parents. What do your ethnographic studies reveal as the most promising opportunities to recognize, engage in and interact with math? How will you develop, test and distribute your videos?

  • Icon for: Amy Parks

    Amy Parks

    Presenter
    May 11, 2015 | 10:12 a.m.

    Thanks for your comment. There are a lot of opportunities for teachers to highlight and scaffold mathematics in both free play and in center times. I have been encouraging teachers to move away from Calendar Time, where students are mostly sitting and watching a teacher or a student, toward playful centers where students have opportunities to construct shapes and count and compare in meaningful ways. Right now, I am sharing videos through PD as well as sharing the content through a book for teachers, Exploring Mathematics Through Play in the Early Childhood Classroom.

  • Small default profile

    Remy Poon

    Guest
    May 11, 2015 | 03:56 p.m.

    Are the video mentioned available to the public? I like to learn more.

  • Icon for: Amy Parks

    Amy Parks

    Presenter
    May 11, 2015 | 04:02 p.m.

    I am in the process of field testing the videos with teacher educators who work with early childhood practitioners. However, if you would like to talk more, please contact me at parksamy@msu.edu.

  • Icon for: Vivian Guilfoy

    Vivian Guilfoy

    Facilitator
    May 12, 2015 | 08:03 a.m.

    I keep thinking that there would be a wide audience for these videos, including college students in early childhood programs and teacher preservice mathematics classes—as well as parents (if the videos are not too technical in their explanation of underlying math concepts). Maybe you could even imagine them playing on a video in a pediatricians waiting room……

  • Icon for: Amy Parks

    Amy Parks

    Presenter
    May 12, 2015 | 05:12 p.m.

    I love the idea of playing these in pediatrician’s offices. We have been mostly thinking about teacher education and professional development, but I think widely-aimed outreach to show what young children are capable of makes a lot of sense.

  • Icon for: Karin Wiburg

    Karin Wiburg

    Distinguished Professor, Learning Design & Technology
    May 11, 2015 | 07:03 p.m.

    I really enjoyed your video on young children doing mathematics. Young kids really love mathematics and do many activities that are rich in mathematical ideas. However, I agree that many teachers don’t know how to foster this type of learning. At New Mexico State University we have a school for young children and the teachers do great mathematics using visual ideas like estimate the amount of beans in a jab. Karin Wiburg, NMSU

  • Icon for: Amy Parks

    Amy Parks

    Presenter
    May 11, 2015 | 09:07 p.m.

    Karin,
    Thanks for your comment. I’m always happy to hear about programs that really attend to early math. Many prospective elementary teachers don’t get to spend enough time on PK-2 concepts and pedagogies.

  • Icon for: Debra Bernstein

    Debra Bernstein

    Facilitator
    May 11, 2015 | 09:30 p.m.

    This is a very interesting idea, and I really enjoy the notion of helping early childhood educators recognize opportunities for math in the classroom. Are there contextual factors that you think can impact uptake of these ideas? For example, in your response above you mention that many teachers don’t get to spend much time on concepts/pedagogies (I assume related to math). Are there characteristics of teachers, e.g., confidence about teaching math, that may play a role?

  • Icon for: Nevin Katz

    Nevin Katz

    Facilitator
    May 12, 2015 | 08:25 a.m.

    Great video and fascinating endeavor. Could you talk more about the PD opportunities you offer teachers? I’m wondering if online or blended professional development that perhaps incorporates video demonstrations could help expand the reach of these practices – what do you think?

  • Icon for: Amy Parks

    Amy Parks

    Presenter
    May 12, 2015 | 05:18 p.m.

    So far, all the PD has been face-to-face; however, I am about to do my first webinar for Michigan’s Department of Education in a couple of weeks. I’m curious to see how it goes.

  • Icon for: Joanne Lobato

    Joanne Lobato

    Professor, Dept. of Mathematics & Statistics
    May 12, 2015 | 09:55 p.m.

    I thought the segment regarding the kinds of conversations teachers tend to have when children are playing with doll clothes was particularly interesting! It reminded me of a study (perhaps you know of it) in which Finnish daycare providers were trained to notice and follow up on the moments when children spontaneously paid attention to numerosity in everyday situations, such as cleaning
    up or free play. I included the reference below.

    Hannula, M. M., Mattinen, A., & Lehtinen, E. (2005). Does social interaction influence 3yearold children’s tendency to focus on numerosity? A quasiexperimental study in day care. In L. Verschaffel, E. De Corte, G. Kanselaar, & M. Valcke (Eds.), Powerful environments for promoting deep conceptual and strategic learning (pp. 63–80). Leuven, Belgium: Leuven University Press.

  • May 13, 2015 | 08:09 a.m.

    The example of folding the doll clothes was really powerful!

  • Icon for: Vivian Guilfoy

    Vivian Guilfoy

    Facilitator
    May 13, 2015 | 09:10 a.m.

    I look forward to reviewing more of your materials. I also think that many of the early childhood programs funded not only by NSF, but by HHS and state departments of early childhood would be very interested in what you are doing.

  • Icon for: Nevin Katz

    Nevin Katz

    Facilitator
    May 14, 2015 | 01:08 p.m.

    I think there is a lot of potential for these techniques to be taught via online learning. You could have a course broken up into a few weeks, and each week could focus on curriculum techniques and have videos of early math education in action. This discussion thread is a good example of the types of conversations that could develop between educators in online discussion forums within a course.

    Are there other questions people have about this project?

  • Icon for: Vivian Guilfoy

    Vivian Guilfoy

    Facilitator
    May 14, 2015 | 04:13 p.m.

    Thanks for this rich exchange of ideas. I learned a lot.

  • Further posting is closed as the showcase has ended.