Mathematical Activity in Early Childhood and the Role of Generalization

  • Marianna TzekakiEmail author


The aim of this study is to provide a deeper insight related to the features of mathematical activity in early childhood. In general, preschoolers are encouraged to get involved in tasks, games or situations with mathematical objects or content, e.g., to measure a distance, or to count a number of objects, to recognize shapes or find the next element in a pattern, in order to develop initial mathematical ideas. However, whether young children think or act mathematically or develop mathematical concepts depends on how thinking and acting mathematically are considered. In this study, we first attempt to specify the characteristics of genuine mathematical activity in early years and then to emphasize the importance of generalization as an essential component of this activity. Finally, we present examples and results of teaching practices supporting generalization. The study is based on research findings used to clarify suggestions, but it is not a research study.


Early mathematical activity Generalization Early mathematical tasks Teaching approaches for generalization 


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© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2020

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Aristotle University of ThessalonikiThessalonikiGreece

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