A Tiered System of Support of Early Math Learning
The grant funded research project, The Early Math Initiative- Tiered Support, is designed to help federal and state-funded preschool programs enhance mathematical development and learning for young children. This will help early childhood teachers strengthen their support for young children’s readiness for mathematics.
Tier 1 (Pre-K Mathematics) is for the general population of children in public preschool programs. Tier 2 (Pre-K Mathematics Tutorial) provides intensive enrichment for children who enter pre-k behind their peers.
Teachers will receive professional development and technical support in the use of instructional practices, classroom and home math activities, and materials. Upon request, training in curriculum coaching can be provided for programs that have their own professional development staff.
Benefits to Joining
- Improved school readiness and student achievement in math. In prior research the achievement gap was closed at the end of prekindergarten (PK) and remained so at the end of kindergarten (K) with participating K students performing at the national average in mathematics.
- $1,200 honorarium for Pre-K teachers participating in research activities and $750 honorarium for Pre-K IAs supporting the instructional and research activities in the classroom
- Free screening of all age-eligible children with free tutoring provided by WestEd for children who are identified as at-risk in their mathematical development
- Free developmentally appropriate materials, produced by Lakeshore, that stay with the class
- Free Pre-K Mathematics curriculum (found effective by the What Works Clearinghouse)
- Free home activities and materials that stay with families (provided in English and Spanish)
- Six days of PD workshops for Pre-K teachers
- 12 in-class coaching support visits (by WestEd team and/or program coaches)
- Implement math activities w/small groups of students twice per week, plus review/make-up once per week as needed.
- Teachers will be randomly assigned to a treatment condition where they will participate in PD and implementation activities described above during the 2023–24 Pre-K school year or a control group where they will continue to teach business-as-usual and will engage in PD and implementation activities the in the 2024–25 school year.
- All teachers, regardless of condition, will send home parent consent letters at the beginning of the program and will complete a survey at the end.
- Administrators and teachers will coordinate with researchers in setting up time and space for individualized child assessments for pre-test in the fall and post-test in the late spring. Teachers do not assess children, researchers do. All EMI assessors will provide required background checks, TB testing results and COVID-19 vaccination records.