'Learning the Language of Nature' shares images of children's early intellectual discoveries

“Learning the Language of Nature: Young Children as Mathematical Thinkers" copyright 2016
“Learning the Language of Nature: Young Children as Mathematical Thinkers" copyright 2016

We are pleased to announce the publication of the Math Early On magazine, “Learning the Language of Nature: Young Children as Mathematical Thinkers,” created by the University of Nebraska-Lincoln’s Center for Science, Mathematics and Computer Education. This booklet describes the partnership between UNL’s Math Early On grant, supported by the Buffett Early Childhood Fund, and Educare of Omaha.

The stories in this booklet illustrate the powerful learning that emerged in the Educares of Omaha at Indian Hill and Kellom, as well as UNL’s Ruth Staples Child Development Laboratory. In the model of an exhibit from the Hawkins Centers of Learning in Boulder, Colorado, as well as Italian-style documentation, the stories combine images, description, and teacher interpretation to reveal, unpack, and share moments and processes of early intellectual discovery for young children.

The principal investigators of Math Early On are Ruth Heaton, Carolyn Pope Edwards, and Victoria Molfese of UNL. Math Early On offers professional development opportunities to Educare teachers that build on past successes of UNL’s NebraskaMATH grant and the Primarily Math initiative. Besides strengthening math instruction, other key elements include: mathematically rich environments (indoors and out), integrating math with literacy, home-school partnerships, and pedagogical documentation. The collaborative partnership between UNL and Educare leadership creates, nurtures, and spreads the ideas and insights that emerge from this professional development.

We hope that you will enjoy this magazine and share it with your colleagues. Please visit our website, http://scimath.unl.edu/csmce/math-early-on for more information and to download a PDF of this booklet. Email us at nebraskamath@unl.edu to receive additional copies.


Carolyn Pope Edwards
Cather Professor Emeritus
Psychology and Child, Youth & Family Studies

Ruth Heaton
Gilmartin Professor of Mathematics Education
Teaching, Learning & Teacher Education

Victoria Molfese
Chancellor’s Professor
Child, Youth & Family Studies