As one of my dollar spot finds, I was thinking of a learning activity for these foam hands. These are colorful and fun to the little learner. I have used them to teach my youngest son his colors. In hopes to make more use of the hands, I was brainstorming a short learning activity. What little learner doesn’t like to play hide-and-go-seek? How about an egg hunt game?
For this one, mommy hides the hands in the family room while the little learners close their eyes and count. If the little learners are not able to count yet, have them close their eyes and sing a song. After the song, tell your child how many hands you hid in the family room. Then have your child go and find all of them. Once the hands have been collected, count the hands out loud together. At this point, if you want to label them with a number, great! The next turn can be your child hiding all the hands and having you search for them. At the end, both of you still count out how many hands have been collected.
So how many hands should you start with your child? You might want to start with hiding two or three when he/she is just starting to walk, or are a great crawler. If your child already knows how to count to five, then hide five of them. If your child is a little bit older and knows how to count to ten, then hide ten. The number your child is trying to work towards understanding, or counting to, is the number of hands to hide.
What if you don’t have these hands, or cannot find these at your local dollar store? There must be five to ten of something in your home. If your child is into cars, then use that. If your child is into bows, then hide the bows. If you have ten spoons, ten pairs of socks, or ten jars of food, then use those for your hide-and-go-seek. The important idea to take from this is that you are playing a game of math with your child by introducing counting and quantity.
Where does this fit into the Schedule of Activities for 0-18 months?
Answer: Wednesdays for learning about numbers, specifically on counting
Where does this fit into the Schedule of Activities for 18 months to 3 years?
Answer: Tuesdays for learning about numbers, specifically on counting and quantity.
Something to Think About:
When learning with your child about counting, remember to show your child what one looks like, what two looks like, and so on. It is great when your child learns how to count to five or ten for the first time. The next step would be to help them learn how much, or how many that number really is. By doing this, you are attaching real meaning to the number. This is huge in the number sense world of mathematics.
Most importantly, as a parent, we might think we need to hurry up on teaching certain things to our children so that they will not fall behind. This allows us to become more stressed or pressured if our children are not learning at the rate we think they should. No worries….just breathe. Because even reading this blog and finding out how to help your child become more successful in math should tell you that you are a wonderful and caring parent. If your child takes more time to learn concepts, it is okay. We all learn at different times. Don’t worry too much. 🙂