Developing and Refining Usable, Accessible, and Culturally Relevant Materials to Maximize Parent-Child Interactions in Mathematics
Research indicates that parent involvement in their child’s education is positively related to academic achievement. The purpose of this manuscript is two-fold. First, we describe a home-based intervention designed to support parents’ involvement with their children in mathematics. The intervention was implemented with parents of children in Grades 1 and 2 in two rural parishes in Jamaica. Key components of the intervention included (a) six sets of mathematics learning materials, each covering foundational early mathematics concepts, and (b) educator-led workshops to implement the mathematics learning materials intended to support parents’ conceptual understanding of the mathematics concepts. Second, we describe the iterative development process used to create the sets of mathematics learning materials. Research and development activities included focus groups conducted with parents, teachers, members from the Ministry of Education, and community members; an external review for mathematical accuracy and cultural relevancy; and a feasibility study implemented with a small group of Jamaican parents. We detail the process used to refine the materials after each of these research activities to improve their usability, accessibility, and cultural relevancy. We hypothesize that parents’ involvement with their children will increase if they have access to accessible and culturally relevant mathematics learning materials.
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