As professional developers we often have little opportunity ourselves to learn more about preparing and supporting preschool teachers teach mathematics. The materials in these modules are to support you in learning more about supporting preschool teachers in mathematics. We also provide resources to use for your support. This case lays out one way you might use the materials to prepare yourself for professional development around preschool mathematics.
Professional Development: Preparation
- Take a look at the Counting module overview to provide you with a sense of the variety of resources available in the module.
- Read Counting on Counting and The Mathematics of Counting to give you an overview of what is involved in counting and why it is important for young children.
- In the Additional Readings section, there are a number of links and more readings which support you as the professional developer by giving you an opportunity to dig into the details of how children develop in their ideas of counting. There is a great deal of robust and compelling research evidence about the development of children’s thinking that can provide you with specific ideas on how to support your participants.
Preparation for Engaging Participants
- Consider how you might engage preschool teachers in learning about the development of children’s ideas about counting. There are a number of resources available about these ideas, included resources on Math Thinking Conversations and examples of how to engage teachers in examining children’s thinking, such as Counting Collections Overview and Anna Counts. Try out an activity yourself.
- Consider who your participants might be and the ideas and perspectives that they will bring to the PD (see, for example, the But I'm not Good at Math! vignette). How might you design the PD to address the teachers’ concerns?
- Consider the preschool children that the teachers work with; what issues might you want to address to help the teachers best support these children? Do you want to draw on a DLL resource, or choose particular videos, or use resources that will redirect the teachers to what their children do know?
Expanding Your Toolkit
- Examine other use cases in this Getting Started section for possible starting places. There are cases for different lengths of engagement but the they can also be used to navigate the resources and recombine them to best meet the needs of your participants.