The Mathematics Enthusiast
University of Montana: Department of Mathematical Sciences
Developing students’ number sense is a critical area of research in mathematics education because of the role number sense plays in early mathematics learning. In particular, cognitive psychology research has pinpointed verbal counting as a number sense construct that is critical in later mathematics achievement. This study explored variations in 7- and 8-year-old students’ number sense outcomes as they engaged in a counting-focused instructional treatment for differing durations. Sixty students in three elementary classrooms in the United States participated in the counting-focused instructional treatment. A generalized estimating equations (GEE) analysis showed an associated average increase in test scores for students participating in 9 weeks of the counting-focused instructional treatment as compared to students participating in 3 weeks of the instructional treatment. This study provides preliminary results about an instructional practice, based in numerical cognition theory, for elementary mathematics teachers to facilitate opportunities for students to develop their number sense.
Shumway, Jessica F. and Moyer-Packenham, Patricia S. (2019) "A Counting-Focused Instructional Treatment to Improve Number Sense:An Exploratory Classroom-Based Intervention Study," The Mathematics Enthusiast: Vol. 16: No. 1, Article 14.