Author: Bottia, Martha C., Mickelson, Roslyn A., Stearns, Elizabeth, & Moller, Stephanie

Title: Foundations of Mathematics Achievement: Instructional Practices and Diverse Kindergarten Students

University Affiliation: University of North Carolina at Charlotte


Research Question: Do teachers' instructional practices differentially affect the mathematics achievement of kindergarten students whose backgrounds differ in terms of their race/ethnicity, socioeconomic status (SES), and mathematic academic readiness?

Published: Yes

Journal Name or Institutional Affiliation: Elementary School Journal

Journal Entry: Vol. 115, No. 1, Pp. 124-150

Year: 2014


  1. Interactive group activities do not significantly interact with racial categories to predict mathematics achievement. Instructional strategies that include the use of music and movement are not beneficial for African American students; in fact, they are detrimental to their mathematics achievement.
  2. Drills benefit students who had low academic preparedness. Drills benefited students with high academic preparedness the most.
  3. Drills are beneficial for most categories of White students, but among White students, interactive group activities are only beneficial for mid- and high-SES students and for students with high academic readiness at the beginning of kindergarten.
  4. Despite the clear benefits of interactive group activities for some White students, they are exposed to these practices with less frequency than are the other racial/ethnic groups.
  5. Music and movement, and manipulatives, are not positively associated with achievement for any racial/ethnic group, both strategies harm the achievement of some Black students. Over 90% of low- and high-SES and low- and high-math-readiness Black students work with any component of the manipulatives factor at least once a week. The non-significant effects for Asian students are partially driven by small sample size.
  6. The math achievement of Black students in the categories of low math academic preparedness and high math academic preparedness decreases the more these students are exposed to music/movement and manipulatives.
  7. Interactive group activities enhance students’ mathematics achievement in kindergarten. Drills enhance math academic achievement of students with high math academic preparedness in kindergarten, the use of manipulatives as well as music and movement have significant negative effects on mathematics achievement of Black students.
  8. Black students’ math achievement is negatively associated with higher exposure to the math/movement instructional practices also challenges prior research on the topic.

Scholarship Type Journal Article Empirical Research

Keywords: Academic Achievement, Elementary School, Instruction, Integration, Math, Race, Racial Composition, SES, SES Composition, Teachers

Regions National

Methodologies: Quantitative

Research Designs: Secondary Data

Method of Analysis: Multilevel Models

Sampling Frame: Kindergarten Students

Sample Types: Nationally Representative

Unit of Analysis: Classroom, School, Student

Data Types: Quantitative-Longitudinal

Data Description:


Entry Created at: 2016-06-21 23:13:26 UTC
Last Update: 2016-09-09 21:03:54 UTC