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EARLY MATHS COMPETENCE ASSESSMENT IN 4-7 AGED CHILDREN. DIFFERENCES BETWEEN AGE AND GENDER

Piaget studies considered that logical thinking acquisition was supporting number sense and arithmetic skills in young children. According to this approach, both mathematical acquisition and logical thinking development progress together (Piaget & Szeminska, 1973). However, although is still considered the importance of the Piagetian mental operations for adequate mathematical knowledge (Baroody, 2009), the concept of Early Mathematics Competence (EMC) introduced a new approach about learning math (Kroesbergen & Van Luit, 2003). EMC involves the ability to understand, judge, make and use mathematics in a variety of conditions intra and extra-mathematical contexts. These skills can become noticeable in different levels of complexity. They are function of children skills and how they are activated as a response to specific context demands (Rico & Lupiánez, 2008). This early math acquisition interaction model supports the “Early Numeracy Test”–R (ENT-R) (Kroesbergen, Van Luit, Van Lieshout, Van Loosbroek, & Van de Rijt, 2009). ENT-R assesses several components involved on mathematical competence development in school children from 4-7 aged. This measurement provides information about the relational and cognitive components implicated in mathematical acquisition. ENT-R also allows a prediction about learning mathematics difficulties for young school children. The Spanish version developed a new computerized form and adapted to different assessment procedures: online web sites administration, computers or mobile devices. In this work we present the standardization process preliminary results for this new assessment tool. We also calculated the Early Mathematics Competence index, focusing on gender and age variables to compare results obtained from a Cadiz (Spain) students sample.