Monday, January 17, 2011
The Role of Early Math
In Canada, more than 49% of people lack basic numeracy skills (Statistics Canada, OECD, 2005). Isn't this astounding?!? Math development starts long before children enter adulthood. A large body of research indicates that the foundation of these skills start even before children enter school - before they reach 4 years of age.
Early arithmetic abilities have been found to be the strongest predictor for later school achievement (Dunan et al., 2007).
Counting ability is the best predictor for the initial level of math performance (from a longitudinal study from preschool to second grade by Aunola, Leskinen, Lerkkanen, and Nurmi, 2004).
The graph above is a visual representation of the Matthew Effect (Source: www.balancedreading.com). Basically, it explains that people who "have" will continue to "have" and even get more, while the "have nots" will always stay at the same level and never catch up to the latter group.
Sounds like a good reason to start building a solid foundation from birth, right?