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Marsico Institute for Early Learning and Literacy

Marsico Institute

Press Room

Dr. Douglas Clements Panelist

STEM Solutions Logo

July 2015

At the 2015 U.S. News STEM Solutions Conference panelists spoke about how children learn STEM at a young age. Read more about what the experts said about closing achievement gaps, including Dr. Douglas Clements tip on encouraging educators to take a playful approach to math. 

Read what others are writing about research co authored by Douglas Clements

April 2015

For many years, advocates of early education have focused on reaching children and their families. Getting more four-year-olds into pre-K, for example, has been an important and increasingly successful rallying cry. But as pre-K expansion accelerates and the science of children advances, we are at a new fork in the road. Brain science is continuously showing just how much children’s growth and development is affected by their interactions with people around them. It is time to get real about what young children, especially the most vulnerable, truly need from the teachers and other caregivers with them every day. Read more here! 

New Articles published by Dr. Douglas Clements

April 2015

Read the new publications co-authored by Marsico Executive Director Douglas Clements and Kennedy Institute Endowed Chair Julie Sarama’s on the development of children’s mathematics skills. Their research, published in The Routledge international handbook of young children's thinking and understanding, Handbook of research methods in early childhood education: Review of research methodologies and Mathematics and Transition to School provides helpful information on how to help students develop a robust understanding of math.

Transforming the Workforce for Children Birth to Age Eight: A Unifying Foundation

March 2015

Children are already learning at birth, and they develop and learn at a rapid pace in their early years. This provides a critical foundation for lifelong progress, and the adults who provide for the care and education of young children bear a great responsibility for these children’s health, development, and learning. The Institute of Medicine (IOM) and National Research Council (NRC) were commissioned to explore the implications of the science of child development for the professionals who work with children birth through age 8. In the resulting report, Transforming the Workforce for Children Birth Through Age 8: A Unifying Foundation, the committee finds that much is known about what professionals who pro­vide care and education for children need to know and be able to do and what professional learning supports they need. However, that knowledge is not fully reflected in the current capacities and practices of the workforce, the settings in which they work, the policies and infrastructure that set qualifications and provide professional learning, and the government and other funders who support and oversee these systems. The report offers recommendations to build a workforce that is unified by the foundation of the science of child development and early learning and the shared knowledge and competencies that are needed to provide consistent, high-quality support for the development and early learning of children from birth through age 8. Read the report here. 

Dr. Douglas Clements Keynote Speaker

Dr. Douglas Clements

February 2015

Dr. Douglas Clements was recently the keynote speaker at the National Council for Curriculum and Assessment conference in Ireland to speak about his research and Building Blocks Program. Read more.

Assessing the Effects of the TRIAD Math Intervention for Preschoolers

Picture of Preschool Children

February 2015

Technology-enhanced, Research-based, Instruction, Assessment, and professional Development (TRIAD) is a math intervention for preschoolers that combines a curriculum, a software-based teaching tool, and in-person teacher professional development. This study randomly assigned 42 schools to implement TRIAD or to not implement TRIAD, and the study found that the TRIAD intervention had positive effects on student math performance. The study meets WWC group design standards with reservations because it demonstrates baseline equivalence but has unknown levels of study attrition. Read more.

New Resource Available for Teaching Children Mathematics

Cover of book

January 2015

Executive Director Dr. Douglas Clements and colleagues have a new resource - Developing Essential Understanding of Geometry and Measurement - available from the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics in January 2015. This book focuses on essential knowledge for teachers about geometry and measurement. It is organized around four big ideas, supported by multiple smaller, interconnected ideas--essential understandings. Taking teachers beyond a simple introduction to geometry and measurement, the book will broaden and deepen their mathematical understanding of one of the most challenging topics for students--and teachers. It will help teachers to engage students, anticipate their perplexities, avoid pitfalls, and dispel misconceptions. Teachers will also learn to develop appropriate tasks, techniques, and tools for assessing students' understanding of the topic.

Get your copy of Dr. Clements’ new book.

Why Math Might Be the Secret to School Success

December 2014

The Marsico Institute's own Dr. Douglas Clements was on NPR this week to talk about the Building Blocks program.

"Little children are big news this week, as the White House holds a summit on early childhood education on Wednesday. The president wants every 4-year-old to go to preschool, but the new Congress is unlikely to foot that bill.

Since last year, more than 30 states have expanded access to preschool. But there's still a lack of evidence about exactly what kinds of interventions are most effective in those crucial early years.

In New York City, an ambitious, $25 million study is collecting evidence on the best way to raise outcomes for kids in poverty. Their hunch is that it may begin with math."

Click here to read more.

North Dakota Department of Public Instruction (NDDPI) study

December 2014

The Marsico Institute for Early Learning and Literacy (MIELL) is assisting the North Dakota Department of Public Instruction (NDDPI) in conducting a state-mandated study. Read more here.  

The Building Blocks of Early Mathematics

November 2014

What are the building blocks of mathematics? How important are they? Doug Clements answers these questions by summarizing recent research and development work. One effective instructional approach featured in all these is basing instruction on learning trajectories. This approach will be illustrated through a set of research projects using learning trajectories successfully.

Dr. Douglas Clements was recently the keynote speaker at the National Council for Curriculum and Assessment conference in Ireland to speak about his research and Building Blocks program.

A Study Seeks to Determine What Makes Prekindergarten Successful

Building Blocks

March 2014

Read about the latest research (conducted with Drs. Douglas Clements and Julie Sarama on their Building Blocks curriculum) to understand what makes quality education successful and scalable.

Play, Mathematics, and False Dichotomies

Kids holding puzzle pieces

April 2014

Dr. Clements' and Dr. Sarama's latest resource on play-based learning in a blog forum presented by the National Institute for Early Education Research.

Click here to read more.

Children's Museum of Denver Broke Ground on a Multi-million Dollar Museum Expansion

Children's Museum of Denver at Marsico Campus

April 2014

The Children's Museum of Denver broke ground today on a major Museum expansion, announcing the plans, timeline and a naming gift for the $15.8 million campaign. Museum president and CEO, Mike Yankovich, cited the "critical role" the Museum plays in early childhood education, and its 74% attendance growth since 2003 as the need for this much-anticipated expansion. 

Building Blocks curriculum cited as effective curriculum in New York Times

Child Using Building Blocks

January 2014 

Douglas Clements, PhD, and Julie Sarama, PhD developed and evaluated an innovative curriculum for early children education, preschool to grade 2 with funding from the National Science Foundation. The Building Blocks project created exemplary mathematics materials designed to enable all young children to meet the new preK-grade 2 standards developed by the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics (principal investigator Doug Clements was on the writing team for NCTM's Principles and Standards for School Mathematics). The article written in the New York Times makes a case for using what we know to increase the quality of early childhood education nationwide.

Click here to read.