Building a Grades K-2 Early Algebra Learning Progression Prototype for Diverse Populations

Research indicates that students need sustained algebra instruction throughout Grades K-12 mathematics education, if their informal intuitions about mathematical structure and relationships are to be transformed into the more formal ways of mathematical thinking.

Currently, however, no research-based models are available to guide the development, characterization and assessment of young children's algebraic thinking, particularly at the start of formal schooling.

This study will design a curricular framework for developing children's algebraic thinking across Grades K-2, with a particular focus on understanding how to support the teaching and learning of algebra with students in at-risk settings.

Study outcomes will include a prototype Grades K-2 instructional sequence, related assessments, and characterizations of progressions in students' thinking as they advance through the instructional sequence.

This work will provide a roadmap for teaching and learning algebra in Grades K-2 that can clarify and deepen the role of algebra in the elementary grades, strengthen current college and career readiness standards and practices, and provide curricular support for elementary teachers in systematically developing children's algebraic thinking.


Ana Stephens


Completed on August 31, 2021

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Ana Stephens