Early mathematical learning: Number processing skills and executive function at 5 and 8 years of age

White, Sonia L. J., Berthelsen, Donna, Walker, Sue, & Williams, Kate E. (2015) Early mathematical learning: Number processing skills and executive function at 5 and 8 years of age. Asia Pacific Journal of Research in Early Childhood Education, 9(3), pp. 45-66.

[img] PDF (183kB)
Administrators only until September 2018 | Request a copy from author

View at publisher


This research investigated differences and associations in performance in number processing and executive function for children attending primary school in a large Australian metropolitan city. In a cross-sectional study, performance of 25 children in the first full-time year of school, (Prep; mean age = 5.5 years) and 21 children in Year 3 (mean age = 8.5 years) completed three number processing tasks and three executive function tasks. Year 3 children consistently outperformed the Prep year children on measures of accuracy and reaction time, on the tasks of number comparison, calculation, shifting, and inhibition but not on number line estimation. The components of executive function (shifting, inhibition, and working memory) showed different patterns of correlation to performance on number processing tasks across the early years of school. Findings could be used to enhance teachers’ understanding about the role of the cognitive processes employed by children in numeracy learning, and so inform teachers’ classroom practices.

Impact and interest:

Citation counts are sourced monthly from Scopus and Web of Science® citation databases.

These databases contain citations from different subsets of available publications and different time periods and thus the citation count from each is usually different. Some works are not in either database and no count is displayed. Scopus includes citations from articles published in 1996 onwards, and Web of Science® generally from 1980 onwards.

Citations counts from the Google Scholar™ indexing service can be viewed at the linked Google Scholar™ search.

ID Code: 87403
Item Type: Journal Article
Refereed: Yes
Keywords: mathematics, number processing, executive function, early childhood education
ISSN: 1976-1961
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > EDUCATION (130000) > EDUCATION SYSTEMS (130100) > Early Childhood Education (excl. Maori) (130102)
Divisions: Current > Research Centres > Children & Youth Research Centre
Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Faculty of Education
Current > Schools > School of Early Childhood
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2015 PECERA
Deposited On: 09 Sep 2015 23:34
Last Modified: 13 Sep 2015 07:08

Export: EndNote | Dublin Core | BibTeX

Repository Staff Only: item control page