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Teaching quality in kindergarten: professional development and quality of adaptive learning support enhances mathematical competency


Dunekacke, Simone; Wullschleger, Andrea; Grob, Urs; Heinze, Aiso; Lindmeier, Anke; Vogt, Franziska; Kuratli Geeler, Susanne; Leuchter, Miriam; Meier-Wyder, Anuschka; Seemann, Selma; Moser Opitz, Elisabeth (2024). Teaching quality in kindergarten: professional development and quality of adaptive learning support enhances mathematical competency. ZDM - Mathematics Education:Epub ahead of print.

Abstract

Adaptive learning support provided by kindergarten teachers before and after (macro-adaptive learning support) as well as during mathematical learning activities (micro-adaptive learning support) is a cross-cutting concept of teaching quality. Effective adaptive learning support enhances children’s learning. However, providing it is challenging and teachers need professional development (PD) to improve the quality of their support. This study investigates the mediating role of teaching quality between PD programs for kindergarten teachers and the development of children’s mathematical competency. 122 kindergarten teachers and their 825 pupils participated in the study. The teachers were randomly assigned to three groups. Two groups attended PD sessions designed to foster either macro- or micro-adaptive learning support. The third was the materials-only control group. The data was analyzed using a self-developed rating instrument focusing on generic and domain-specific elements of teaching quality related to macro- and micro-adaptive learning support. The multilevel latent change model analysis revealed that the PD programs had positive and significant effects on the teaching quality of kindergarten teachers. A significant positive relationship was also found between micro-adaptive learning support and changes in children’s mathematical competency. However, an indirect effect of teaching quality could not be detected, and the PD programs did not have a total effect on children’s mathematical competency. The study reinforces the importance of PD that specifically targets macro- and micro-adaptive learning support for kindergarten teachers. The mediation between PD and mathematical competency development requires further investigation.

Abstract

Adaptive learning support provided by kindergarten teachers before and after (macro-adaptive learning support) as well as during mathematical learning activities (micro-adaptive learning support) is a cross-cutting concept of teaching quality. Effective adaptive learning support enhances children’s learning. However, providing it is challenging and teachers need professional development (PD) to improve the quality of their support. This study investigates the mediating role of teaching quality between PD programs for kindergarten teachers and the development of children’s mathematical competency. 122 kindergarten teachers and their 825 pupils participated in the study. The teachers were randomly assigned to three groups. Two groups attended PD sessions designed to foster either macro- or micro-adaptive learning support. The third was the materials-only control group. The data was analyzed using a self-developed rating instrument focusing on generic and domain-specific elements of teaching quality related to macro- and micro-adaptive learning support. The multilevel latent change model analysis revealed that the PD programs had positive and significant effects on the teaching quality of kindergarten teachers. A significant positive relationship was also found between micro-adaptive learning support and changes in children’s mathematical competency. However, an indirect effect of teaching quality could not be detected, and the PD programs did not have a total effect on children’s mathematical competency. The study reinforces the importance of PD that specifically targets macro- and micro-adaptive learning support for kindergarten teachers. The mediation between PD and mathematical competency development requires further investigation.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:06 Faculty of Arts > Institute of Education
Dewey Decimal Classification:370 Education
Scopus Subject Areas:Social Sciences & Humanities > Education
Physical Sciences > General Mathematics
Uncontrolled Keywords:Teaching quality in kindergarten, macro-adaptive learning support, micro-adaptive learning support, professional development, mathematical competency
Language:English
Date:9 April 2024
Deposited On:22 May 2024 09:37
Last Modified:30 Jun 2024 01:41
Publisher:Springer
ISSN:1863-9690
OA Status:Hybrid
Free access at:Publisher DOI. An embargo period may apply.
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1007/s11858-024-01566-y
Official URL:https://rdcu.be/dE1Iw
Project Information:
  • : FunderDFG
  • : Grant IDLI 2616/1–1
  • : Project Title
  • : FunderDFG
  • : Grant IDHE 4561/8 − 1
  • : Project Title
  • : FunderDFG
  • : Grant IDLE 3327/2 − 1
  • : Project Title
  • : FunderSNSF
  • : Grant ID156680
  • : Project TitleStruktur fachspezifischer professioneller Kompetenzen von pädagogischen Fachkräften und ihre differenziellen Effekte auf die Qualität von mathematischen Lehr-Lern-Situationen im Kindergarten und den Kompetenzzuwachs von Kindern.
  • Content: Published Version
  • Language: English
  • Licence: Creative Commons: Attribution 4.0 International (CC BY 4.0)