MyTeachingPartner - Mathematics/Science Curricula and Implementation Support System

  • Research Project
MyTeachingPartner Math Science logo

What We Do

MyTeachingPartner is a curriculum for at-risk four-year-olds and just-in-time support system for their teachers.

Project Info

Project Status: Active

Funding Source: Institute of Education Sciences, U.S. Department of Education, Grant R305A120631

Principal Investigator: Jessica Whittaker


  • Teachers observed to: 
    • Provide students with higher quality instructional support
    • Provide students with higher facilitation of mathematics and scientific thinking
  • Children demonstrated greater learning gains across the year and higher end-of-year performance

How we did it.

Design thinking and systematic design methods:

  • Met with users and stakeholders, analyzed needs, brainstormed solutions, rapid prototyping of solutions, extensive testing from small pilot to large scale efficacy trial in 140 classrooms


  • Young children’s math and science knowledge/skills are most important predictors of academic success but relatively little time is spent on this in the early childhood classroom
  • Teachers are not confident as facilitators of math and science learning
  • Traditional professional development is expensive, time-consuming, distant from practice


  • Yearlong curricula for prekindergarten mathematics and science provide engaging, cognitively demanding inquiry activities, scaffolding students' deep knowledge and skill development
    • Support children’s emerging development across the year
    • Are appealing and fun, balancing child-directed explorations with teacher guidance
    • Easy for teachers to implement
    • Embed teacher professional development in bite-sized chunks, more likely to be transferred to practice
  • We brought teachers a laser focus in limited time:  In 10 minutes a day, learn how to implement an entire year’s curricula in math and in science:
    • Rich teaching tips embedded within the curricula: Bite-sized teaching tips, recommendations for differentiated instruction, and extensions across the school day and at home
    • Online just-in-time demonstrations of high quality, high fidelity teaching practice are authentic, from at-risk classrooms like teachers’ own

Why online delivery matters:

  • Scaled professional development meets needs of many teachers inexpensively
  • Reduction in time away from classroom for training
  • Available everywhere, via computer or mobile device, via an attractive user interface

MyTeachingPartner Video

Watch our MyTeachingPartner video to learn more.

Project Team

Kathy Neesen

Kathy Neesen

  • Research Scientist
  • Instructional Technology Director
Robert C Pianta

Robert C. Pianta

  • Batten Bicentennial Professor of Early Childhood Education
Matthew C. Semanik

Matthew C. Semanik

  • Multimedia and Web Developer
Virginia (Ginny) E Vitiello

Virginia E. Vitiello

  • Research Associate Professor
Jessica E Whittaker

Jessica E. Whittaker

  • Research Associate Professor
  • Director of Birth to Eight Initiatives
Amanda P Williford

Amanda P. Williford

  • Batten Bicentennial Professor of Early Childhood Education Associate Director for Early Childhood Education
  • CASTL Clinical Psychologist


  • Vick Whittaker, J., Kinzie, M.B., Williford, A., & DeCoster, J. (2015).  Mathematics and Science Curricula and Professional Development: Effects of MyTeachingPartner-Math/Science on Teacher-Child Interactions in Prekindergarten Classrooms.  Early Education and Development
  • McGuire, P., Kinzie, M.B., Thunder, K., & Berry, R.  (2016).  Methods of Analysis and Overall Teaching Quality in Pre-K Mathematics.  Early Education and Development
  • Kinzie, M. B., Vick Whittaker, J., McGuire, P., Lee, Y., & Kilday, C.R.  (2015).  Research on curricular development for pre-kindergarten mathematics & science.  Teachers College Record, 117 (7).
  • Kinzie, M.B., Vick Whittaker, J., Williford, A., Maier, M., McGuire, P., Lee, Y., & Kilday, C.R.  (2014).  MyTeachingPartner-Math/Science pre-kindergarten curricula and teacher supports: Associations with children's math and science learning.  Early Childhood Research Quarterly, 29(4), 586-599.  doi: 10.1016/ j.ecresq.2014.06.007
  • McGuire, P. R., & Kinzie, M. B.  (2013). Analysis of place value instruction and development in pre-k mathematics.  Early Childhood Education Journal, 41, 355-364. doi: 10.1007/s10643-013-0580-y
  • Lee, Y., & Kinzie, M. B.  (2012).  Teacher questioning and student responses with regard to cognition and language use.  Instructional Science, 40, 857-874.  doi: 10.1007/s11251-011-9193-2.
  • Kilday, C.R., Kinzie, M.B., Mashburn, A.J., & Whittaker, J.V. (2012).  Accuracy of teacher judgments of preschoolers' math skills. Journal of Psychoeducational Assessment, 30(2), 148-159. doi:10.1177/0734282911412722
  • Lee, Y., Kinzie, M. B., Whittaker, J. V.  (2012).  Impact of online support for teachers’ open-ended questioning.  Teaching and Teacher Education, 28, 568-577. doi:10.1016/j.tate.2012.01.002
  • McGuire, P., Kinzie, M.B., & Berch, D.B. (2012).  Developing number sense in pre-k using five-frames. Early Childhood Education Journal, 40(),213-222. doi:10.1007/s10643-011-0479-4
  • Wang, F., Kinzie, M. B., McGuire, P., & Pan, E. (2010).  Applying technology to inquiry-based Learning in early childhood education.  Early Childhood Education Journal, 37(5), 381-389.  doi:10.1007/s10643-009-0364-6
  • Kilday, C. R., & Kinzie, M. B. (2009).  An analysis of instruments that measure the quality of mathematics teaching in early childhood.  Early Childhood Education Journal, 36, 365-372. doi:10.1007/s10643-008-0286-8

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