Mathematics-related Competence of Early Childhood Teachers Visiting a Continuous Professional Development Course: An Intervention Study

Julia Bruns, Lars Eichen, Hedwig Gasteiger

Abstract


Recent studies highlight early childhood teachers’ mathematics-related competence. Developing this competence should be a main aspect of early childhood teachers’ education. This is, however, not the case in all countries. Consequently, high-quality professional development courses are needed. Based on research results, we developed a competence-oriented continuous professional development course (EmMa) and examined the effects of EmMa by asking: How does EmMa affect the development of early childhood teachers’ i) mathematical content knowledge, ii) mathematical pedagogical content knowledge and iii) beliefs towards mathematics in general? To answer these questions, we conducted a pre-test/post-test study including a control group with 99 in-service early childhood teachers. Results show that the course affected teachers’ mathematical pedagogical content knowledge and static orientation towards mathematics positively. From this we conclude that scaling-up EmMa might be a suitable approach to bridge the gap between pre-service education with nearly no mathematics and the challenges of early mathematics education.

 


Keywords


early childhood teachers; mathematics-related competence; professional development; teacher knowledge; beliefs

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References


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