Using digital games to develop multilingual kindergarten children´s mathematical language

Project owner

Western Norway University of Applied Sciences

Project categories

Basic Research

Project period

December 2016 - December 2021

Project summary

In this project, parents, kindergarten teachers, teacher education students, and teacher educators work together to develop and integrate playful mathematical apps/games into learning opportunities provided at home and kindergarten to multilingual children. This will lead to more a cohesive approach in providing learning opportunities to multilingual children and to improving understanding of how to build on the expertise of all participants, whilst also increasing participants´ knowledge of how young children acquire mathematical language. With the increase in multilingual kindergartens across the world, comparative studies will be conducted in Germany, New Zealand and Russia based on the work initiated in this project.

The main objective of this project is to improve kindergarten teachers’ skills in integrating digital apps in their work with multilingual children to develop their language skills in Norwegian and their home language(s) about mathematical ideas.

For the project to develop kindergarten teachers’ competency in regard to using digital apps to support multilingual children´s possibilities for discussing mathematics in Norwegian and their home language(s), research is needed: on multilingual children’s experiences at home and at kindergarten, both in regard to their use of ICT and their interests; and about how kindergarten teachers, preservice teachers and teacher educators can design, trial and implement playful mathematical apps/games which support children’s use of Norwegian and their home language(s) at kindergarten and at home. There is also a need for research about how to work with multilingual parents to support children’s learning at home and to connect this to their learning at kindergarten. For this research, a flexible research methodology is needed to ensure that appropriate information is collected from the collaboration between parents, teachers, teacher education students, teacher educators and a software development company: as input for the design stage; from the trialling of the apps/games in some kindergartens; and from the implementation of the apps/games in kindergartens in Norway and in the parallel studies being undertaken elsewhere in the world.