Mathematics teaching in Hong Kong pre-schools: Mirroring the Chinese cultural aspiration towards learning?

Sui Ngan Sharon NG

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Chinese pre-school children perform well in learning mathematics compared with English-speaking children. This study investigates the scenes behind Chinese pre-school Children’s mathematics performance using teacher questionnaires and interviews. Results indicated that the Chinese number system appeared to afford advantages to Chinese children in learning individual mathematics concepts but this was not enough to explain why children perform well in other areas. Frequent practice and exposure to mathematics in pre-schools, together with parental support at home might explain why children performed well in mathematics learning. Study results also revealed that although the underpinning philosophy of pre-school curriculum planning in Hong Kong might be similar to some pre-schools in other parts of the world, such as the adoption of integrated curriculum and unstructured play, contradictory practice might also be incorporated. Mathematics teaching in Hong Kong pre-schools mirrors the Chinese cultural aspiration towards learning, and both teachers and parents play an active role in pursuing academic success for each child. Copyright © 2014 Centre for Innovation in Mathematics Teaching at Exeter University.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-36
JournalInternational Journal for Mathematics Teaching and Learning
Volume2014
Publication statusPublished - 2014

Citation

Ng, S. S. N. (2014). Mathematics teaching in Hong Kong pre-schools: Mirroring the Chinese cultural aspiration towards learning? International Journal for Mathematics Teaching and Learning, 2014, 1-36.

Keywords

  • Early childhood education
  • Mathematics
  • Culture

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