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Digital Video Documentation as a Reflective Tool for Enhancing Children's Mathematical Understanding and Reasoning


Principal Investigator: Sudha Swaminathan
Co-Investigator: Patricia Gardner

This study examined the effects of digital video documentation and re-visiting on young children's mathematical skills. Preschoolers' math-based interactions were captured as digital video clips by the researcher. Edited clips were re-played to individual children, with the classroom teacher scaffolding their reflection with prompts and comments. After 3 months, all preschoolers showed a significant growth in their math abilities, as measured by TEMA (Test of Early Mathematical Ability). Children also showed significant growth in their abilities to reason mathematically. These reasoning behaviors revealed (for the most part) a strong imitation of the logic, language and gestures modeled by the teacher during her scaffolding. Children continued to demonstrate these behaviors during off-study activities and during natural peer interactions. The study validates the use of digital video technology and re-visiting in the classroom. More pertinently, it underscores the essential value of the teacher's continual and appropriate scaffolding. Results also suggest that classroom teachers should gradually elevate the level and sophistication of their own scaffolding behaviors and verbal prompts to match the growth in the children.

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