Publication Date: November 26, 2021
This groundbreaking book looks at the development of mathematical thinking in infants and toddlers, with an emphasis on the earliest stage, from zero to three, when mathematical thinking and problem solving first emerge as natural instincts. The text explores the four precursor math concepts—attribute, comparison, change, and pattern—with an emphasis on how development occurs when it is nurtured by loving, knowledgeable others. The authors call this the CAIR principle: Closely Attend & Intentionally Respond. Sharing their stories of working with a wide range of zero to three caregivers and educators, the authors stress the difference between arithmetic skills and their definition of mathematics as “a logical way of thinking that allows for increasing precision.” Each user-friendly chapter includes suggestions for highly effective practices that are embedded into everyday interactions and routines. Early care providers can use this resource to develop young children’s interest in mathematics, ensuring that they are ready for the big ideas they will encounter in preschool.
cognitive development in relation to mathematical thinking.
Mary Hynes-Berry is a bestselling author, professional developer, consultant, and a faculty member at Erikson Institute for Early Childhood. Jie-Qi Chen is a professor of early education at the Erikson Institute in Chicago and founder of the Institute’s Early Math Collaborative. Barbara Abel is an experienced early childhood leader and clinical lecturer at the University of Illinois Chicago.
“In Precursor Math Concepts, scholars/practitioners Hynes-Berry, Chen, and Abel walk us hand-in-hand down a beautiful path to see, support, and nurture young children from birth in the wonders and foundations of mathematics. The journey through their four pillars, from attribute to comparison to change to pattern, has relevance beyond mathematics in creating the beginnings of a more coherent conceptual world view. Joining these three authors is a trip well worth taking, full of treats, insights, and relevant tools. Wonderstandingindeed!”
—Daryl Greenfield, professor of psychology and pediatrics, University of Miami