Geetha B Ramani

Geetha B Ramani
University of Maryland, College Park | UMD, UMCP, University of Maryland College Park · Department of Human Development and Quantitative Methodology

PhD

About

45
Publications
43,458
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3,289
Citations

Publications

Publications (45)
Article
Full-text available
Young children’s symbolic magnitude understanding, or knowledge of how written numerals and number words can be ordered and compared, is thought to play an important role in their mathematical development. There is consistent evidence that symbolic magnitude skills predict mathematical achievement in later childhood and adulthood. Yet less is known...
Article
Full-text available
Children learn and use various strategies to solve math problems. One way children's math learning can be supported is through their use of and exposure to hand gestures. Children's self-produced gestures can reveal unique, math-relevant knowledge that is not contained in their speech. Additionally, these gestures can assist with their math learnin...
Article
Hand gestures can be beneficial in math contexts to reduce the user’s cognitive load by supporting domain-general abilities such as working memory. Although prior work has shown a strong relation between young children’s early math performance and their general cognitive abilities, it is important to consider how children’s working memory ability m...
Article
Full-text available
Young children are strongly encouraged to engage with math-related materials in early childhood classrooms; however, little is known about how preschoolers explore math during play with a peer. The current study examined 86 preschoolers’ (Mage = 4 years, 5 months, SD = 7 months) math exploration during peer play, the characteristics of dyads associ...
Article
Young children’s math learning opportunities in families appear to relate to long-term math achievement and attitudes. While there is growing interest in promoting families’ support of children’s math learning, existing family math models do not fully capture sources of variation in how families support early math learning. We propose an expanded c...
Article
On average, preschoolers from lower-income households perform worse on symbolic numerical tasks than preschoolers from middle- and upper-income households. Although many recent studies have developed and tested mathematics interventions for low-income preschoolers, the variability within this population has received less attention. The goal of the...
Article
Full-text available
This article synthesizes findings from an international virtual conference, funded by the United States National Science Foundation, focused on the home mathematics environment (HME). In light of inconsistencies and gaps in research investigating relations between the HME and children’s outcomes, the purpose of the conference was to discuss actiona...
Article
The mathematical talk that parents use when engaging with their children is important for children’s early math development. However, parents vary in the amount and type of mathematical input they provide. Because early math knowledge is predictive of later achievement, understanding contributors to this variation has implications for children’s ma...
Article
Sources that contribute to variation in mathematical achievement include both numerical knowledge and general underlying cognitive processing abilities. The current study tested the benefits of tablet‐based training games that targeted each of these areas for improving the mathematical knowledge of kindergarten‐age children. We hypothesized that pl...
Article
Full-text available
The prevalence of tablet computer use among young children has risen dramatically, as have educational apps claiming to promote school readiness skills such as mathematical knowledge. Parents can contribute to their preschoolers' math readiness through the math talk they provide during everyday interactions in traditional nonelectronic activities....
Article
Preschool children from lower-income households have lower performance on measures of early numerical skills than children from middle-income households. The present study examined the effectiveness of numerical card games in improving children’s foundational numerical and executive functioning skills. Preschool children from low-income households...
Article
Bilingual children exhibit enhanced working memory (WM) skill relative to monolingual children, which could have implications for early mathematics development. Competency in mathematics is supported by conceptual and procedural mathematical knowledge, and numerical knowledge is in turn supported by underlying cognitive processes such as WM. Buildi...
Article
This study examined parent–child math talk within three contexts (formal learning; guided play; unguided play) in order to identify characteristics of activities supporting high‐quality math engagement. Seventy‐two dyads of parents and 4‐ and 5‐year‐olds were observed using a set of toy foods; instructions and materials varied across conditions. Pa...
Article
Discrepancies in early mathematical knowledge between children from different socioeconomic backgrounds have been found before the start of kindergarten. The early home environment is one context that can address these discrepancies. This study examined whether an informal mathematical activity that has been successful at promoting children's numer...
Article
INTRODUCTION. The early home environment is critical for laying a strong numerical foundation for young children’s development. Participation in math-related informal learning activities in the home is associated with caregiver and child talk about math; however, it is unclear which activities promote different types of math talk. METHOD. We observ...
Article
Full-text available
Preschoolers from low-income households lag behind preschoolers from middle-income households on numerical skills that underlie later mathematics achievement. However, it is unknown whether these gaps exist on parallel measures of symbolic and non-symbolic numerical skills. Experiment 1 indicated preschoolers from low-income backgrounds were less a...
Chapter
Full-text available
Play is voluntary, spontaneous, and joyous. Play and play-based learning are integral to healthy social development in children. Children who play more are more self-regulated, cooperative, considerate, friendly, and socially competent. They display more appropriate social behaviors, coping skills, and experience greater peer acceptance. Despite th...
Article
Full-text available
Ensuring that kindergarten children have a solid foundation in early numerical knowledge is of critical importance for later mathematical achievement. In this study, we targeted improving the numerical knowledge of kindergarteners (n = 81) from primarily low-income backgrounds using two approaches: one targeting their conceptual knowledge, specific...
Article
Full-text available
According to Hunt's match hypothesis, the accuracy of parents' beliefs about their children's abilities can influence the nature of the early learning experiences they provide. The present study examined the accuracy of parents' beliefs about their preschoolers' number development and relations to parent-reported frequency of engaging children in n...
Book
Full-text available
The Handbook of Social Influences in School Contexts draws from a growing body of research on how and why various aspects of social relationships and contexts contribute to children’s social and academic functioning within school settings. Comprised of the latest studies in developmental and educational psychology, this comprehensive volume is perf...
Chapter
The Handbook of Social Influences in School Contexts draws from a growing body of research on how and why various aspects of social relationships and contexts contribute to children’s social and academic functioning within school settings. Comprised of the latest studies in developmental and educational psychology, this comprehensive volume is perf...
Article
Cognitive aspects of children's executive function (EF) were examined as moderators of the effectiveness of parental guidance on children's learning. Thirty-two 5-year-old children and their parents were observed during joint problem-solving. Forms of guidance geared towards cognitive assistance were coded as directive or elaborative, and children'...
Article
Full-text available
The present studies examined whether parents' beliefs about the fixedness of ability predict their self-reported interactions with their children. Parents' fixedness beliefs were measured at two levels of specificity: their general beliefs about intelligence and their beliefs about their children's math and verbal abilities. Study 1, conducted with...
Article
Full-text available
Playing and learning mathematics do not have to be mutually exclusive activities, especially in kindergarten. Play and games can give young children opportunities to learn and develop foundational math skills that are aligned with Common Core standards for mathematics through age-appropriate, fun, and engaging activities.
Article
Engaging in critical-analytic thinking is essential for knowledge construction and school success. However, little is known about how best to promote such thinking in children and adolescents. Since the research base on promoting critical-analytic thinking is nascent, considering research on fostering skills that could be considered its precursors,...
Chapter
Full-text available
Before children begin school, there is a wide range of individual differences in children’s early numerical knowledge. Theoretical and empirical work from the sociocultural perspective suggests that children’s experiences in the early home environment and with informal number activities can contribute to these differences. This article draws from t...
Article
Full-text available
Cooperative problem solving with peers plays a central role in promoting children's cognitive and social development. This article reviews research on cooperative problem solving among preschool-age children in experimental settings and social play contexts. Studies suggest that cooperative interactions with peers in experimental settings are not a...
Article
Full-text available
We examined whether a theoretically based number board game could be translated into a practical classroom activity that improves Head Start children's numerical knowledge. Playing the number board game as a small group learning activity promoted low-income children's number line estimation, magnitude comparison, numeral identification, and countin...
Article
Full-text available
Empirical and theoretical literature on cooperative problem solving in preschool children suggests that integrating features of play into structured, experimental settings should increase the benefits of joint peer interactions and task performance. Four- and five-year-old peer dyads completed a playful, flexible, and child-driven building task or...
Chapter
This article describes how a theoretical analysis and empirical findings regarding number sense led to the development of an educational intervention that produces large and rapid increases in low-income children’s mathematical knowledge. Roughly an hour of playing a simple numerical board game based on the mental number line construct led to subst...
Article
Full-text available
Using a sample from the NICHD Study of Early Child Care (N = 435; 219 girls), the authors derived several measures of regulation and dysregulation that predicted, both concurrently and longitudinally, children's positive and negative peer interactions in multiple contexts. Observers rated peer interactions in child care and during dyadic play with...
Article
Developments in very young children's topographic representations of their own bodies were examined. Sixty-one 20- and 30-month-old children were administered tasks that indexed the ability to locate specific body parts on oneself and knowledge of how one's body parts are spatially organized, as well as body-size knowledge and self-awareness. Age d...
Article
Full-text available
A theoretical analysis of the development of numerical representations indicated that playing linear number board games should enhance preschoolers’ numerical knowledge and ability to acquire new numerical knowledge. The effect on knowledge of numerical magnitudes was predicted to be larger when the game was played with a linear board than with a c...
Article
Full-text available
The numerical knowledge of children from low-income backgrounds trails behind that of peers from middle-income backgrounds even before the children enter school. This gap may reflect differing prior experience with informal numerical activities, such as numerical board games. Experiment 1 indicated that the numerical magnitude knowledge of preschoo...
Article
Theoretical analyses of the development of numerical representations suggest that playing linear number board games should enhance young children's numerical knowledge. Consistent with this prediction, playing such a game for roughly 1 hr increased low-income preschoolers' (mean age = 5.4 years) proficiency on 4 diverse numerical tasks: numerical m...
Article
Early development of body self-awareness was examined in 57 children at 18, 22, or 26 months of age, using tasks designed to require objective representation of one's own body. All children made at least one body representation error, with approximately 2.5 errors per task on average. Errors declined with age. Children's performance on comparison t...
Article
One- and two-year-old peer dyads were presented with a simple cooperative task. Age differences were found in amount of coordinated activity, monitoring the peer's activity and location in relation to the goal, and attempting to achieve the goal when the peer was (or was not) available as a partner. One-year-olds' coordinated actions appeared more...
Article
Full-text available
Carpendale & Lewis (C&L) stress the importance of social interaction for social understanding, but focus on the adult-child relationship. In the present commentary, we discuss the development of social understanding within early peer relationships. We argue that peer interaction stretches the limits of early social understanding, thereby providing...
Article
This research investigates the relationship between psychological understanding and positive social behavior in preschool children. A sample of 67 children were given measures of mental state understanding and emotion understanding. Positive social behavior was measured by classroom observation, teacher report and peer ratings. Both mental state un...

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