Challenges in teaching mathematics at the ECD level: Implications for teachers and teacher educators

Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Education (M. Ed.)


Institute for Educational Development, Karachi


In the current reform of Mathematics teaching, the children are required to develop their understanding of mathematical concepts and apply this understanding in real life situations. However, ECD1 children lack their basic understanding in mathematics. This study was conducted to understand the challenges in teaching Mathematics at the level of early childhood development, with the rationale to improve teaching and learning mathematics at children's early years of schooling. This study was conducted in a private ECD English medium school in Karachi, Pakistan. This study is based on Mathematics teaching and learning in classes I and II in an ECD school. The age group of children was six to eight years old. The study was qualitative in nature. The two ECD (classes II and I) Mathematics teachers' perceptions, and teaching practices and challenges for teaching mathematics were explored through semi-structured interviews, classroom observations, post observation discussions, and document analysis. Findings were compared and analyzed from all different data collection methods. The findings of this study suggest a significant influence of teachers' views on their teaching practices. The teaching practices identify different teaching strategies in school; such as group work, integrated teaching, fast teaching pace and choral responses based on rote-learning vs. meaningful learning. Findings suggest that these practices are not effective to enhance children's learning in Mathematics due to teachers' understanding of mathematics concepts and the way of teaching and learning mathematics. In teachers' perspectives, classroom discipline, preparing activities and integrated teaching are challenges for ECD teachers. This study also suggests the implications for teachers and teacher educators as well as offers recommendations for the future research.

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