- Cultural differences in early math skills among U.S., Taiwanese, Dutch, and Peruvian preschoolers
- International Journal of Early Years Education
- Volume | Issue number
- 19 | 2
- Pages (from-to)
- Document type
- Faculty of Social and Behavioural Sciences (FMG)
- Research Institute of Child Development and Education (RICDE)
East Asian children have consistently outperformed children from other nations on mathematical tests. However, most previous cross-cultural studies mainly compared East Asian countries and the United States and have largely ignored cultures from other parts of the world. The present study explored cultural differences in young children's early math competency prior to their school entry among U.S., Taiwanese, Dutch, and Peruvian four-year-olds. Results showed that the Taiwanese children performed better than U.S., Peruvian, and Dutch children. No difference was found between U.S., Peruvian and Dutch children. In addition, results revealed that more Taiwanese four-year-olds were able to count up to at least 21 when compared with children from the other three countries. We discuss varying cultural factors (e.g. language and parental support) as contributing reasons for East Asian children's high mathematical skills at an early age.
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