Bounded learning progressions: a framework to capture young children’s development of mathematical activity in play‑based contexts

Chelsea Cutting, Tom Lowrie

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Learning progressions have become increasingly prevalent in mathematics education as they offer a fine-grain map of possible learning pathways a child may take within a particular domain. However, there is an opportunity to build upon this research in ways that consider learning from multiple perspectives. Many current forms of learning progressions describe learning pathways without explicit consideration of how related skills and contexts directly or indirectly enhance or influence learning. That is, the structured and unstructured learning contexts that can help children develop conceptual understanding in a range of STEM contexts. We consider learning progressions from multiple perspectives, which will be particularly important for supporting learning in early years, play-based contexts. We propose a novel theoretical perspective, termed Bounded Learning Progressions (BLP), which demonstrates the connection and influence ways of reasoning have on the progression of learning in specific domains, bounded by the context in which learning develops. We suggest that this approach provides a broader perspective of children’s learning capabilities and the possible connections between such abilities, acknowledging the critical role context plays in the development of learning.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-21
Number of pages21
JournalMathematics Education Research Journal
DOIs
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 22 Jun 2022

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