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Catching Math Struggles Early with the Number Sense Screener™

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Number sense is a key indicator of future math success—and now there’s a quick, reliable, and affordable way to screen early numerical competencies in Grades K–1 and identify students at risk for later math struggles.

Join the co-developer of the Number Sense Screener in this free, 45-minute webinar to learn about how the tool can help you catch children’s math struggles before they fall behind

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Catching Math Struggles Early with the Number Sense Screener™

1. 1. CATCHING MATH STRUGGLES EARLY WITH WITH THE NSS Nancy C. Jordan University of Delaware © 2013 Nancy C. Jordan
2. 2. Overview of the NSS • Number Sense Screener (NSS) is a research- based tool for screening key numerical competencies in kindergarten and early first grade. • Areas assessed are aligned with the CCSS for kindergarten mathematics and thus are uniquely suited for planning interventions. • Includes 29 items with norms for the fall and spring of kindergarten and the fall of first grade. • Individually administered and takes 15–20 minutes to conduct.
3. 3. Kindergarten math is important • Kindergarten achievement has far-reaching consequences. • Kindergarten test scores associated with college attendance, earning potential, and financial management, even when background characteristics are held constant. • Independent of cognitive ability and social class, kindergarten math concepts powerful predictors of adolescent learning outcomes across content areas.
4. 4. Primacy of number sense • Although most kindergarten math curricula cover multiple topics, number sense is of primary importance during this age period (National Research Council, 2009). • Virtually all of the kindergarten math topics in the Common Core State Standards (CCSS) are associated with number competencies related to knowledge of • whole numbers • number relations • number operations • Even measurement and geometry standards require children to use number words and concepts.
5. 5. Individual differences in number sense • Number sense is heavily influenced by experience and instruction. • Low-income children enter kindergarten with less number knowledge than middle-income children. • Deficient number sense a core marker for severe and persistent learning disabilities in mathematics. • Good news! Efforts to teach number sense to high-risk children have resulted in significant gains math achievement compared to control groups.
6. 6. Many children enter kindergarten unprepared for learning math Despite the importance of early number development and the growing body of evidence that number sense can be taught to young children, the National Research Council’s Committee on Early Childhood Mathematics (2009) concludes: Most early childhood programs spend little focused time on mathematics, and most of it is low in instructional quality. Many opportunities are missed for learning mathematics over the course of the preschool day (p. 339).
7. 7. What is number sense? • Generally agreed that number sense in the 3- to 6-year-old range involves interrelated abilities involving numbers, relations, and operations, such as: • immediate recognition of small quantities • counting items in a collection to at least 5 with knowledge that the final count word indicates how many are in the set • discriminating between small quantities (e.g., 4 is greater than 3, 2 is less than 5) • comparing numerical magnitudes (e.g., 5 is 2 more than 3) • operating on small sets by adding or taking away items
8. 8. NSS is relevant to response to intervention (RtI) service delivery models The NSS can help professionals to: 1) screen and identify students at risk for math difficulties early, 2) develop evidence-based interventions, and 3) adjust instruction according to students’ abilities
9. 9. NSS subareas • Number • Counting (n = 3) • Number recognition (n = 4) • Relations • Number comparisons (n = 7) • Operations • Nonverbal calculations (n = 4) • Story problems (n = 5) • Number combinations (n =6 )
10. 10. Counting knowledge “Here are some stars. I want you to count each star. Touch each star as you count.” Turn over paper and ask, “How many stars were on the paper you just saw?” “Count as high as you can.”
11. 11. 13, 37, 82, 124 Number recognition
12. 12. • What number comes right after 7? • What number comes two numbers after 7? • Which number is closer to 5: 6 or 2 Number comparisons examples
13. 13. Nonverbal calculations
14. 14. Story problems examples Jill has 2 pennies. Jim gives her 1 more penny. How many pennies does Jill have now? Kisha has 6 pennies. Peter takes away 4 of her pennies. How many pennies does Kisha have now?
15. 15. Number combinations examples How much is 4 and 3? How much is 2 and 4? How much is 7 take away 3? How much is 6 take away 4?
16. 16. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 Ways to observe calculation strategies:
17. 17. Some research findings with the NSS: • The ability to solve simple combinations -- even at the very beginning of K -- are most strongly predictive of math achievement from first through third grades (about .7). • Kindergartners’ abilities to compare numbers and solve add/subtract number combinations uniquely predict calculation fluency in second grade, over and above working memory, spatial ability, and language • Simple story problems are especially problematic for children from low-income families, who show little growth in this area between K and first grade. • High internal reliability • Convergent and divergent validity.
18. 18. Thanks for joining us! To order: www.brookespublishing.com 1-888-638-3775 To learn more: http://www.brookespublishing.com/re source-center/screening-and- assessment/nss/