The effects of an early intervention strategy on the counting, number identification and inhibitory control of children in their first year of school.
Thesis DisciplineHealth Sciences
Degree GrantorUniversity of Canterbury
Degree NameMaster of Science
BACKGROUND: Poor counting and number identification in early childhood adulthood is associated with a wide range of negative adult outcomes. Despite the large amount of research showing a relationship between mathematics and inhibitory control, no intervention studies were found that included inhibition training as part of the numeracy instruction strategy. Therefore, the aim of this study was to assess the effectiveness of an audio taped counting and number identification intervention (Taped Numbers) and inhibitory control training (Inhibition Feedback) on counting and number identification in Aotearoa/New Zealand children in their first year of school. METHOD: This study employed an across participants multiple baseline design. Participants were six children in their first year of school from a primary school in Christchurch, Aotearoa/New Zealand who were nominated by their teacher as likely to benefit from a counting and number identification intervention. Taped Numbers used an audio-delivered task-based feedback strategy and Inhibition Feedback used an instructor-delivered task-based feedback strategy. RESULTS: Visual analysis of the data revealed that the Taped Numbers component of the intervention was moderately effective with two out of four replications for counting and three out of five replications for number identification. Extended Line Celeraton (ECL) analysis indicated large effect sizes for participants that made gains. DISCUSSION: Although both Taped Numbers and Inhibition Feedback were effective, no relationship could be established between gains in inhibitory control and gains in counting and number identification. The results are also discussed in relation to the current literature on counting and number identification interventions in early primary school. The practical implications of the findings are discussed as are recommendations for future research.