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The significance of counting

Maclellan, Effie (1993) The significance of counting. Education 3-13, 21 (3). pp. 18-22. ISSN 0300-4279

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Abstract

What does it mean to say that someone can count? For the adult, counting is a seemingly straightforward activity: the adult notices the set of items to be counted, assigns a number name to each item in the set and recognises that the last number name used defines the total number of items in the set. That adults are skilled in counting is not surprising. They have practised the skill for many years: in fact most have been practising this skill since the age of two (Gelman and Gallistel1)!