CMNetwork E-bulletin: November 2013

    © Copyright M. Worthington & E. Carruthers 2012

Welcome to your CM Network News page

New! For 2014: National Masters Module in Early Childhood Mathematics: Redcliffe Children's Centre, Bristol with Bath Spa University.

The example of pretend play below will be published in:

Worthington, M. and van Oers, B. Pretend play and the cultural foundations of mathematics. European Early Childhood Education Research Journal – accepted for publication.

Ice-cream shops (3-4 years)

This example reveals the embedded nature of children’s mathematics. Ayaan was just beginning to explore mathematics in her play.

Shopping with her mum Ayaan knows a lot about paying for goods, and sees her dad count the money he takes each day from working as a taxi driver.

At home she loves helping to prepare ingredients and helps care for her siblings.

For two weeks Ayaan had been playing in the gazebo outside in the nursery garden, offering pretend ice cream through the window to children. Today when a child replied ‘Yes’, Ayaan answered ‘No left’, adding ‘I make more'. Then collecting stones and pretending to make ice cream, Ayaan asked Tariq if he wanted any. She passed him an imaginary ice cream, then pressed buttons on the till saying, ‘It’s 50 minutes.’ Soon after Ayaan drew dashes in a notebook without comment.

The next time Ayaan played ice cream shops she asked ’50 minutes please’. When a child offered ‘£1.00’ Ayaan replied ‘That’s £50 please.’

Ayaan’s confidence in speaking English had grown, and she often chose to initiate role-play with her peers. Playing ice-cream shops became a familiar context in which she explored mathematical ideas and developed friendships.

Taxonomy: Making meaning in social pretend play and imagination.

  • Written number and quantities: Early explorations with marks: attaching mathematical meanings

Gallery 7: The emergence of graphic symbols and texts in pretend play

Welcome to New Members

From the Southwest of England, welcome to Kaoru Edwards, University of Bristol; Sara Filer, Ashton Vale Preschool, Bristol; Anne Moore, Perry Court Schools, Bristol; Georgina Muxworthy, Christ Church First School, Frome, Somerset; Tracie O’Halloran, Lydney, Gloucestershire; Michelle Perry, Four Acres Primary School, Bristol and Chloe Passmore, Parson Street Primary School, Bristol. From London and the South East, welcome to Polly Mayer and Katie Regan, Hungerford Children’s Centre and Nursery, Berkshire.


New! Carruthers, E. and E. Butcher. (2013) Mathematics: young children co-construct their mathematical enquiries. In P. Beckley. Ed. (2013) The New Early Years Foundation Stage: Changes, Challenges and Reflections. Maidenhead: Open University Press, (2nd ed.)

Courses and Conferences

Courses and Conferences: 2013-2014

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October 2013

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