All posts by Caroline Cohrssen

Caroline Cohrssen is employed at the University of Melbourne as a senior lecturer/researcher on the Master of Teaching (Early Childhood). She is interested in the home learning environment and young children’s demonstrations of mathematical thinking, not only in what they say but also in what they make, draw and do. Caroline’s work aims to equip pre-service early childhood educators to recognise mathematical thinking, plan playful activities and interact purposefully with children to support and extend children's emerging mathematical skills and understanding. 'Her current research focuses on four year old children's demonstrations of spatial thinking.

Name a job where you can act like a child?

This question was asked recently during a weekend primetime TV family quiz show. Among the top three answers? Clown, childcare worker and kindergarten teacher. It made DR CAROLINE COHRSSEN reflect on play in early childhood learning and a ‘game’ approach to preschool mathematics by the Northern Territory Government. Find out more about her work and […]

Assessing children’s understanding during play-based maths activities

When we ask children to explain their thinking to us we gain an insight into what they already know, says CAROLINE COHRSSEN. She encourages us to reach beyond what we’re comfortable doing in our work with young children in her blog (originally posted in 2015). Cohrssen translates Early Years Learning Framework concepts on mathematical language and symbols into practical steps and conversation starters that foster young children’s deep thinking.  Engaging […]

I did it! Young children’s academic self-concept in the year before school

Children’s self-awareness develops gradually. Starting with physical self-awareness in infancy, children become increasingly able to gather and understand information about themselves. When children are three and four years old, they often focus on observable characteristics like eye colour, but they also evaluate their own abilities in comparison with other children’s abilities: they know who is […]

Families leading learning

As early childhood educators, we know that children learn from birth and that families are children’s most important educators. Studies have shown that intensive interventions with families have an impact on children’s learning – but would a non-intensive intervention change how parents or caregivers support their children’s literacy and numeracy skills at home? Also, would […]

You need to use your words!

Does this ring a bell? As early childhood educators, we support children’s ability ‘to use their words’ – when we model the words to use to join in with play, to share ideas in small and large group conversations, to express feelings and to resolve peer disputes. However, how often do we intentionally encourage children […]

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