Myanmar preschool teachers’ mathematics teaching beliefs and practices before and during the COVID-19 Pandemic

Hay Mar MYAT KYAW, Sum Kwing CHEUNG

Research output: Contribution to conferencePapers

Abstract

COVID-19 has posed severe challenges for early childhood education in many places around the world, including Myanmar. We are particularly concerned with the effects of COVID-19 on early mathematics learning and teaching there because Myanmar children usually exhibit poor mathematical performance in international studies. This study thus examined Myanmar preschool teachers’ mathematics teaching beliefs, their mathematics teaching practices before and during the pandemic, and the factors contributing to the belief-practice gap, if any. Semi-structured interviews were conducted with 14 Myanmar preschool teachers. Results showed that the majority of teachers in our sample regarded mathematics as an important area to teach in preschool. They also believed that it was better to teach children mathematics through play than direct instruction and drill and practice. Before the pandemic, teacher-led play was often adopted to help children learn mathematics, and various types of mathematical questions were asked during the play process. However, mathematics was not taught every day, and worksheets were sometimes used as learning material. During the pandemic, only a few teachers conducted asynchronous online classes, and most teachers relied heavily on worksheets to teach children mathematics. Generally, after the outbreak of COVID-19, the teachers increased in their perceived importance of the role of parents in children’s mathematics learning, and they demanded more collaboration with families. Moreover, there was a wider belief-practice gap relating to mathematics teaching, but support from school management and parents were the key to reduce the gap. Based on the results, recommendations for Myanmar preschool teacher education are provided. Copyright © 2021 HKERA-APERA International Conference.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2021

Citation

Myat Kyaw, H. M., & Cheung, S. K. (2021, December). Myanmar preschool teachers’ mathematics teaching beliefs and practices before and during the COVID-19 Pandemic. Paper presented at The HKERA-APERA International Conference 2021, Hong Kong, China.

Fingerprint

Dive into the research topics of 'Myanmar preschool teachers’ mathematics teaching beliefs and practices before and during the COVID-19 Pandemic'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.