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Shared picture book reading in early mathematics: A systematic literature review

Journal Contribution - e-publication

Shared picture book reading (SPBR) refers to an activity in which the adult reads aloud a picture book to children and which often includes interactions about the picture book outside of the actual reading. In this systematic review, we analyzed the characteristics of the picture books that are used to stimulate early mathematics, and the frequency, quality, and effectiveness of SPBR in early mathematics. Additionally, we looked at the association between the frequency, quality, and effectiveness of this activity and the characteristics of the picture book, child, reader, and context. A systematic search in four databases yielded 49 articles that were eligible for inclusion. First, results showed that picture books contain characteristics that may both stimulate and hinder children’s mathematical development. Second, the frequency of SPBR was hardly studied, constraining current insights into this topic. Third, the quality of SPBR was mainly studied via the number and the type of mathematical utterances made by the child and/or the reader, with findings pointing to a rich variety of utterances in terms of both number and type. Fourth, SPBR was shown effective to stimulate children’s mathematical development. SPBR frequency, quality and effectiveness was hardly studied in association with picture book, child, reader, and context characteristics making it difficult to draw conclusions about their complex interplay. We end with gaps in the available research on SPBR in the domain of mathematics and offer suggestions for future research.
Journal: Journal für Mathematik-Didaktik
ISSN: 1869-2699
Issue: 2
Volume: 44
Publication year:2023