Early Math Professional Development: Meeting the Challenge Through Online Learning

  • Kathleen M. SheridanEmail author
  • David Banzer
  • Anne Pradzinski
  • Xiaoli Wen


Early math success in the PreK classroom is recognized as a strong predictor of later academic success. However, many early childhood teachers report they lack the content knowledge, confidence and beliefs to deliver high quality math experiences in their classrooms. Professional development opportunities to gain and expand these skills are often difficult for early childhood educators to access. The purpose of this article is to examine the professional development opportunities available to early childhood educators in the United States and to present a model of professional development that is accessible and effective. This article provides a description of the importance of math in the early years and reveals the need for early math professional development opportunities for early childhood teachers. A portrait of the current state of professional development opportunities for early childhood teachers in the United States is presented along with a presentation of a successful online early math professional development program that was developed to meet the need of early childhood educators. The article ends with implications for current professional development opportunities and ideas for future directions.


Early math Early childhood professional development Early childhood professional learning Online professional development Barriers to professional learning 



Funding was provided by CME Group Foundation.


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature B.V. 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department Educational PsychologyUniversity of Illinois at ChicagoChicagoUSA
  2. 2.Department of Early Childhood EducationNational Louis UniversityChicagoUSA
  3. 3.Department of Educational Psychology (MC 147)University of Illinois at ChicagoChicagoUSA

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