Recent research suggests that both the accuracy and linearity of number estimations are asource of difficulty in mathematical learning. There is also a range of evidence to suggest thatchildren in East Asia are typically mathematically precocious compared to Western peers.Bringing these strands of work together, we discuss number line estimations involving an abilitymatch study of children growing up in the United Kingdom and China. This article confirmsthat the quality of children’s number estimation is associated with some—but by no meansall—early number problems. However, contrary to earlier studies, young Chinese childrendo not display more linear number scales in advance of (and potentially as a driver for) theirmath skills. Instead, their number estimations are not more accurate than those from an olderWestern sample with equivalent mathematical ability. The development of linearity in numericalrepresentations takes a complex developmental path in multiple cultures.
|Journal||Journal of Cross-Cultural Psychology|
|Publication status||Published - 28 Apr 2011|