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Building mathematical competencies in early childhood

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  • The mathematical skills children bring with them to elementary school predict both their mathematical and literacy achievement for years to come. In this video, experts from Erikson Institute's Early Mathematics Education Project discuss approaches to creating rich, developmentally appropriate math experiences for young children. Lively footage from three pre-K classrooms in the Chicago Public School system, a Head Start program on Chicago's South Side, and a private preschool in a Chicago suburb illustrates how foundational math can be joyfully incorporated into both informal and planned activities.
  • This film deals with the WHY's, WHAT's, and HOW's of including rich, developmentally appropriate mathematics experiences for young children in Pre-Kindergarten classrooms.


  • Companion piece to Building Literacy Competencies in Early Childhood.
  • Encoded with permission for digital streaming by Films Media Group on November 09, 2012.
  • Films on Demand is distributed by Films Media Group for Films for the Humanities & Sciences, Cambridge Educational, Meridian Education, and Shopware.
  • Closed-captioned.


  • Myths about Early Mathematics Instruction (3:34) -- Myth No. 1: (1:00) -- Myth No. 2: Teaching Mathematics Is Easy (1:21) -- Myth No. 3: Math Is in the Environment (0:46) -- Big Idea No. 1: "Sets" (4:34) -- Big Idea No. 2: Quantity (2:48) -- Big Idea No. 3: Counting (3:04) -- Big Idea No. 4: Measurement (3:23) -- Big Idea No. 5: Shapes (3:48) -- Implications for Teaching (1:13) -- Mathematical Moments (2:53) -- Receptive Understanding (2:07) -- Purposeful Practice (1:54) -- Intentional Math Experiences (3:21) -- Credits: Building Mathematical Competencies in Early Childhood (0:41)
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