Early Learning in Mathematics™
Early Learning in Mathematics (ELM) is a kindergarten Tier 1 mathematics curriculum that provides the foundation for every student to develop conceptual understanding and procedural fluency with critical kindergarten mathematics concepts and skills.
Early Learning in Mathematics is a kindergarten core (Tier 1) mathematics curriculum aligned to the Common Core State Standards. ELM, which has been field tested and iteratively revised based on teacher feedback, is designed to develop foundational knowledge and conceptual understanding of mathematical concepts for a full range of learners.
120 ELM lessons include:
- 30 minutes of teacher-facilitated instruction.
- 15 minutes for students to engage in independent Math Practice worksheets.
- Additional 15 minutes of calendar activities to teach, reinforce, and apply math concepts and skills in the context of “morning circle” time.
- Lessons are composed of 4 to 5 activities and include initial instruction, practice, and review organized into three learning strands: Number and Operations, Geometry, and Measurement.
- Students are introduced to numbers through 100, with the goal of mastery of numbers 1 – 30
- Instructional objectives aligned with the Common Core State Standards in Mathematics (CCSS-M) for kindergarten.
- Developed and evaluated with funding from the U.S. Department of Education’s Institute of Education Sciences (IES)
- Available in Spanish as Aprendizaje Temprano de las Matemáticas
- Development of Conceptual Understanding through engagement with mathematical models including number lines, hundreds chart, ten-frames, finger models, tally marks, and base-ten models.
Vocabulary and Discourse
- Key mathematical vocabulary is identified and explicitly taught and reviewed.
- Scripted lessons ensure continuity and precise definitions.
- Students are provided opportunities to use mathematical vocabulary to reason and provide justification.
- Procedural Fluency and Automaticity: Systematic practice and review within and across lessons, with frequent opportunities for students to respond
Instructional Design Components:
- A unique strand design introduces new skills gradually through explicit instruction, and continues practice across lessons.
Problem-solving activities are the focus of every fifth lesson.
- Completed as a whole class and/or in pairs
- Require students to make sense of problems, model various solution strategies, and justify and communicate their mathematical reasoning
- Home-School Connection. Every Math Practice Worksheet includes a “Note Home” in English and Spanish, summarizing math concepts addressed in the daily lesson and providing suggestions for practice at home.
- Kids Are Teachers (KAT). KAT activities allow a student to act as the teacher and lead a variety of math activities.
- Quarterly In-Program Assessments gauge students’ mastery of objectives. Students engage in math-focused activity centers while the teacher completes student assessments.
Materials are delivered in convenient, downloadable PDFs. Once the PDFs are purchased, they may be printed according to the Distribution License Agreement.
|Item||Included in Teacher Kit||Sold Separately|
|Quarterly Teacher Books||✓||✓|
|ELM Calendar Book||✓||✓|
|Math Practice worksheets||✓||✓|
|Big Number Book||✓|
|Program Support Materials||✓|
Quarterly Teacher Books include:
- A teacher’s Guide.
- 120 thirty-minute, teacher-directed lessons divided into four books of 30 lessons each.
- A list of manipulatives and a list of Program Support Materials needed for program implementation.
- A teacher copy of the Math Practice worksheets for each lesson.
ELM Calendar Book
- Daily 15-minute lessons (in addition to the 30-minute teacher-led lessons)
- Monthly objectives include saying the days of the week, identifying what day is yesterday and tomorrow, saying the months and seasons of the year, counting the number of days before an event and identifying patterns on the hundreds chart.
Math Practice worksheets
- Daily 15-minute, written worksheets reinforce objectives for each lesson and include a “Note Home” with tips to practice concepts and skills.
Big Number Book
- Read-aloud poems introduce numbers 1-12.
Program Support Materials
Includes reproducible materials:
- Quarterly Assessments with directions, student record form, class summary, and student worksheet
- Number Cards (with and without number models of ten-frames, tallies, fingers, and base-ten models)
- Shape, Vocabulary, Addition and Subtraction Cards
- Place Value Mat
- Quarterly Activity Tables
- KAT (Kids are Teachers) materials
- Family letter in English and Spanish
Required manipulatives are commonly available in kindergarten classrooms or may be purchased from educational retailers.
For convenience, customers may purchase a manipulatives kit from EAI. This kit includes everything on the manipulatives list except for the shape books. The University of Oregon (UO) Center on Teaching and Learning (CTL) does not endorse or have a relationship with EAI, nor does it require customers to purchase manipulatives from any particular vendor. Other vendors may contact firstname.lastname@example.org to have a link to a manipulatives kit designed specifically to support Early Learning in Mathematics added here.
Our Research to Your Classroom
- At-risk children in ELM classrooms made significantly greater gains from pretest to posttest than their not-at-risk peers in ELM classrooms, a pattern that was not found in control classrooms.
- All effect sizes meet the What Works Clearinghouse standards (WWC, 2013) for showing a “substantively important positive effect”.
- Overall, results would describe ELM as having a “statistically significant positive effect” on student outcomes.
A randomized control trial of ELM was conducted with 64 classrooms. Control classrooms used district-adopted kindergarten curricula, and mathematics instructional time was controlled. We examined intervention effects by testing differences between ELM and control classrooms on changes in primary outcomes from the beginning to the end of kindergarten. Primary outcomes included the Test of Early Mathematics Ability (TEMA), and Early Numeracy-Curriculum Based Measures (EN-CBM). The study sample was comprised of kindergarten students at-risk (66%) or not-at-risk (34%). On the math measures, TEMA (t = 3.29, p = .0017) and the EN-CBM (t = 2.54, p = .0138), children in ELM classrooms outperformed children in control classrooms. The Hedge’s g effect sizes were .24 on the TEMA and .22 on EN-CBM. Furthermore, at-risk children in ELM classrooms made significantly greater gains from pretest to posttest than their not-at-risk peers in ELM classrooms, a pattern that was not found in control classrooms. All effect sizes meet the What Works Clearinghouse standards (WWC, 2011) for showing a “substantively important positive effect” and overall results would describe ELM as having a “statistically significant positive effect” on student outcomes.
Chard, D. J., Baker, S. K., Clarke, B., Jungjohann, K., Davis, K. L. S., & Smolkowski, K. (2008). Preventing early mathematics difficulties: The feasibility of a rigorous kindergarten mathematics curriculum. Learning Disabilities Quarterly, 31(1), 11–20. doi: 10.2307/30035522
Clarke, B., Baker, S. K., Smolkowski, K., Doabler, C. T., Strand Cary, M., & Fien, H. (2014). Investigating the efficacy of a core kindergarten mathematics curriculum to improve student mathematics learning outcomes. Journal of Research on Educational Effectiveness, Advanced online publication. doi: 10.1080/19345747.2014.98002
Clarke, B., Smolkowski, K., Baker, S. K., Fien, H., Doabler, C. T., & Chard, D. J. (2011). The impact of a comprehensive tier 1 core kindergarten program on the achievement of students at risk in mathematics. Elementary School Journal, 111, 561–584. doi: 10.1086/659033
Doabler, C. T., Baker, S. K., Kosty, D. B., Smolkowski, K., Clarke, B., Miller, S. J., & Fien, H. (2015). Examining the association between explicit mathematics instruction and student mathematics achievement. The Elementary School Journal, 115, 303–333. doi: 10.1086/679969
Doabler, C. T., Clarke, B., Kosty, D., Baker, S. K., Smolkowski, K., & Fien, H. (in press). The effects of a core kindergarten mathematics program on the mathematics achievement of Spanish-Speaking English learners. School Psychology Review
Doabler, C. T., Nelson-Walker, N. J., Kosty, D. B., Fien, H., Baker, S. K., Smolkowski, K., & Clarke, B. (2014). Examining teachers’ use of evidence-based practices during core mathematics instruction. Assessment for Effective Intervention, 39(2), 99-111. doi: 10.1177/1534508413511848
Doabler, C. T., Strand Cary, M., Jungjohann, K., Fien, H., Clarke, B., Baker, S. K., Smolkowski, K., & Chard, D. (2012). Enhancing core math instruction for students at-risk for mathematics disabilities. Teaching Exceptional Children, 44(4), 48–57. doi:10.1177/004005991204400405
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