Pi Has Passed, but Can We Still Celebrate?

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The biggest Pi Day ever has since passed. It was celebrated on 3/14/15 at 9:26 am and 53 seconds, so that we had 3.141592653…! We will not be seeing this for about another hundred years, but we still get to celebrate Pi Day every year on March 14th! To learn more for yourself, or for your older children, try http://www.piday.org

What about for our younger children?  We can:

1. Begin experimenting with measuring different circles with a piece of string and then taking that against a ruler to figure out length, which leads to,

2.  Talking about circumference (which is really finding the perimeter of the circle, or length

3. Looking at diameter (the length or distance across the circle),

4. Looking at Radius, which is half the length of a diameter of a circle, and

5. Compare! Get the circumference of any circle you are measuring and divide that by the measurement of its diameter. What number do you get? Get another circle and take its circumference and diameter and compare. What number do you get? How does that compare with the other circle?

6. This item can be either you number one choice to do before choices 1-5, or you can save this best for last. Read story books about Pi! This one is really fun and doesn’t take a whole lot of planning.

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Where is this in the schedule of Activities of 3-5?

Answer:

1. Monday- Reading a Math Story

2. Tuesday- Math under Numbers

http://www.learningmathwithmom.com/sites/default/files/CALENDAR3yearsto5yearsofagePDF_0.pdf

Something to Think About:

For yourself, search through the internet on Pi.  Go to the library and look for books about Pi and read them for yourself and for your children.  For Pi, it is not just about that one day our of the year to learn about it, it is most importantly about seeing how this relates to the world around you and your children.

The more you and your children can see how you interact and deal with mathematics in everyday life and in nature, the more comfortable you will become in learning mathematics.  Learning about math is for everyone.  Mathematics is not just for the ones who go to college, or because they are a certain gender, mathematics is something that is all around us and everyone can study it.

So we can we celebrate Pi Day? Of course! Celebrate math everyday! 🙂

copyright 2015 learning math with mom

copyright 2015 learning math with mom

The Power of One, Two, Three…

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The power of 1,2,and 3 is quite powerful, especially for a baby or toddler.  When you begin counting one, or two of something, you are giving the child a sense of numbers. It is not the sake of counting, it is the sense of showing quantity.  The ways to offer your child a lesson in quantity is to:

1.  Count the number of pieces of fruit or cereal you are giving them;

2.  Count out loud and with fingers the number of rocks, trees, or plants outside; and

3. Read them books that focus on counting to three, ones that I have are in the picture above.

Counting to one, two, and or three does not seem like a big deal for us, but it is for a baby and toddler. To them, having one nose is a big deal. What do you mean we have two eyes and two ears? But what about one more? What happens in threes? These are all questions to show how to count, point them out, and read about.

Where is this in the Schedule of Activities for 0-18 mos?

Answer:

1. Wednesday -numbers(counting)

http://www.learningmathwithmom.com/sites/default/files/Schedule%20for%20the%20Week_zerotoeighteenmonths.pdf

Where is this in the Schedule of Activities for 18mos to 3 years?

1. Tuesday-numbers

http://www.learningmathwithmom.com/sites/default/files/ScheduleofActivitiesfor18mosto3yrsofage_0.pdf

Something to Think About:

With our babies, there is so much to learn as this is a  great time to get to know the world around them in new ways, especially in number sense.  As a parent, though, we might think we need to hurry up on teaching certain things to our children so that they won’t 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.  Just start counting in front of the babies and be more transparent in your thinking.  Say the numbers aloud, the colors aloud, and the shapes aloud.  Doing this broadens their bank of vocabulary.  Remember that it is that important to know that you are doing a great job!

 

 

copyright 2015 learning math with mom

copyright 2015 learning math with mom

 

Helping Your Kids Count Away Cold and Flu Season

With three kids, it is only a matter of time for someone to get sick, especially during cold and flu season. What my kids need to practice is washing their hands for at least twenty seconds each time. What I first started out doing was using a dry erase marker on the mirror and writing down the numbers 1 through 20. They had to look at the numbers on the mirror and starting counting while they were washing hands. At this point, my kids know how to identify their numbers 1 through 20. Now, it is 40 through 60, or 101 through 120. This also will give them a sense of what 20 seconds feels like.  It will give them a sense of time. Here are some examples to give you ideas:

mirrornumbers mirrornumbers2

Where is this on the Schedule of Activities from 18 months to 3 years of age?
Answer:

1. Tuesday for Numbers
http://www.learningmathwithmom.com/sites/default/files/ScheduleofActivitiesfor18mosto3yrsofage_0.pdf

 

Where is this on the Schedule of Activities from 3 to 5 years of age?

Answer:

  1. Monday for Sequence
  2. Tuesday for Numbers

http://www.learningmathwithmom.com/sites/default/files/CALENDAR3yearsto5yearsofagePDF_0.pdf

 

Something to Think About:

We can always say that we are too busy to teach our children at home, but we really are our children’s first teachers regardless of what we are directly or indirectly teaching them. What I am offering to you is showing you a simple way to help your children use mathematics as if it was not a big deal. The more we are using the mathematics in a more comfortable and useable manner, kids will be more open to working with the math when there is a bit of a challenge because it will be no big deal.

Remember to have patience when your child skips 48 from 47 to 49. The main point is to teach them to keep track of how long they are washing their hands to wash away those germs as much as they can. You will need to be with them to model and practice what it is you want them to do, but it will not take much time for them to do this by themselves 🙂 Keep it fun, keep it simple, and help your kids wash their hands and count away the germs:)

copyright 2014 learning math with mom

copyright 2014 learning math with mom

Zoo, Numbers, and Shapes

zooandnumbers

At our local zoo, Reid Park Zoo, I entered my then two year old into some classes in the mornings that were held once a month. One of the classes focused on numbers and the zoo. At first, I did not know what to expect, but after the class, I was really impressed.

All the toddlers and preschoolers for the class meet at the entrance. We all go through the zoo and stop at various animal sites. The focus is to have the kids look at the animals and count how many legs they have, or what shapes they might have on them. For the giraffes, the children counted four legs and for the tortoises, the shapes ranged from squares to pentagons to circles. After the tour through the zoo, the children and parents gathered to a room for story time, an activity, and looking closely at other animals.

One of the books read to the children was about how many legs or how many toes a given animal has. The activity after that was to make an octopus out of a paper plate, paper strips, and paper circles. The parent and child were able to number the legs and decorate. The next activity consisted of placing the correct animals and number of animals onto the selected square on the sheet of paper. One section of the sheet was looking for 1 flamingo, so you placed the flamingo there. The other animals were frogs, hippos, and alligators. The picture above shows both finished activities.

At the end of the class, the Reid Park Zoo educators had three small animals for the kids to look at and touch. The whole focus was to get to know the animal, count how many legs, count how many toes, and allowing the children to touch the animal first hand. Each animal the zoo educators bring out to the class are safe for the kids and parents to touch and observe. It could be a hen, a bearded dragon, a rabbit, or a skink.

My son loved the whole experience and it was a real situation where one can apply math, in context. It was fun, real, and worth sharing it with you to encourage you to go to the Reid Park Zoo, or your local zoo, and take part in the experience!

 

Where is this on the Schedule of Activities from 18 months to 3 years of age?
Answer:

1. Monday on Shapes

2. Tuesday on Numbers
http://www.learningmathwithmom.com/sites/default/files/ScheduleofActivitiesfor18mosto3yrsofage_0.pdf

 

Where is this on the Schedule of Activities from 3 to 5 years of age?

Answer:

  1. Tuesday on Numbers
  2. Wednesday on Classify

http://www.learningmathwithmom.com/sites/default/files/CALENDAR3yearsto5yearsofagePDF_0.pdf

Something to Think About:

To be able to take your child(ren) outside of the house and experience the mathematics in context is priceless. The learning does not need to always be in the home, it can also include going out of the house and exploring the many ways we can see math around us. If you have the opportunity to take classes at your local zoo, please do. This was a great experience for my child to experience the math and relate it to something real, the zoo animals.

Just remember that it is not just about doing mathematics, but the special time you and your child are having together with the mathematics. 🙂

For more information about Reid Park Zoo and the classes it offers, please go to https://store.reidparkzoo.org/mainstore.asp?vid=0

Note: I have not been compensated in any way by Reid Park Zoo in writing this blog.

copyright 2014 learningmathwithmom

copyright 2014 learningmathwithmom

Math That You Can Eat: Quantity with Chopsticks, Cereal, and Number Cards

quantitychopsticks1

This is certainly not a new idea, but one that I changed according to what I had in the house.  Basically, you want to have a set of number cards 1 through 10, chopsticks or dividers, and cereal.  My second oldest was about 2 ½ to 3 years old.  He really was showing signs of how much he liked to count things, so I wanted to give him a learning activity to help build on his sense of quantity.

First, everything was set up just as you see in the picture above, but without the cereal.  The cereal is in a bowl for my son to grab and use.  I showed him the name of the game by saying that I have the number one, so I need to put one piece of cereal in the spot.  I then said that now I have the number two, so I need to put two pieces of cereal in the spot.  I then said that I now have the number three and asked him how many pieces of cereal I need to put in the spot.  He told me I had to put three pieces of cereal there, so I knew he got it.  I told him that I would like him to finish it all the way to the number 10; once he finished, he can eat all that cereal up as a treat.

This did not take very long for him to finish.  It took about ten to 15 minutes.   Because this was the first time for this learning, I sat there to see what he was doing to check his quantities for each number.  If he miscounted or forgot what number he was on when counting, I was there to help him.  If I had left him by himself this very first time, he would have eaten all the cereal after doing four and five on the numbers cards because he loves his cereal! 🙂  When I am with him, though, we are learning together and it is a great mommy and son time to have in the morning.  The photo below is the rest of the activity set up with his completed work with the cereal before he ate it all 🙂

quantitychopsticks2

Where is this on the Schedule of Activities from 18 months to 3 years of age?

Answer:

  1. Tuesday on Numbers, especially in quantity

http://www.learningmathwithmom.com/sites/default/files/ScheduleofActivitiesfor18mosto3yrsofage_0.pdf

 

Where is this on the Schedule of Activities for 3 to 5 years of age?

Answer:

  1. Tuesday for Numbers (specifically counting), Quantity, and Measurement

http://www.learningmathwithmom.com/sites/default/files/CALENDAR3yearsto5yearsofagePDF_0.pdf

 

Something to Think About:

Once my son learned how to do this, he wanted to work on this over and over again.  It was about the third time that I did not need to be with him sitting next to him or looking over his shoulder.  He wanted to do this by himself and then I would check his quantities when he was done.  The big treat was that he was doing something by himself and got to eat the cereal 🙂

My oldest was watching him do this and also wanted to work on it.  He already knew his numbers 1 through 10, but I am not one to get in the way of any of my kids when it comes to doing a learning activity.  After the first try, I changed the quantities from 1 through 10 to 11 through 15.  You can change the quantities to whatever you want, depending on the age of your child.  If you want to do numbers 1, 2, and 3, then do that.  If you want to just do the first five numbers, go for it!  If you want to do this in tens, or in any other quantity for your multiple age kids, this is a great idea!  This learning activity is so easy to set up and flexible to be adapted for any quantity, that I do hope you take advantage of this one and try it out.

Materials:

Number cards (you can make your own)

Chopsticks (you can use forks, pencils, breadsticks, straws, string, etc.)

Cereal (you can use crackers, green peas, corn kernels, or whatever you have in the kitchen)

Again, as a parent, we might think we need to hurry up on teaching certain things to our children so that they won’t 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. I will say this over and over again because it is that important to know that you are doing a great job! 🙂

copyright 2014 learning math with mom

copyright 2014 learning math with mom

Stop and Notice How the Day is Changing

Sunfortimeofdaywebsite

What is day? What is morning? What is afternoon? What is evening? What is night? What is dawn?  There is a cycle that is being repeated by nature every time the sun comes up and goes down and the moon joins in at night.  Your baby, or itty bitty one can listen to you as you describe the day or night.  It is about being deliberate about what we already know about the parts of the day and to say it out loud so that our child can listen and observe.  Just like we sometimes point out that this is a yellow banana and the grass is green, and the sky is blue, so do we need to point out change in the day to our child.

Once your child is old enough to notice the clock or begin to talk, start talking about what time it is during the day.  When you are waiting to go out of the house to run an errand, or go visit someone, let your child know what time it is that all of you or both of you will be leaving?  Either write down the time and have it next to the digital clock, or have their toy clock set to the time of departure and have it near the analog clock.  Start talking about what time it is when it is breakfast time, lunch time, nap time, getting ready for bedtime, and time to go to sleep.  This routine you have set for them is associated with the time of day.  Beginning to point out what time opens the child’s world to taking note to time.

This piece of time is not about learning how to tell time by reading a clock, but the beginnings of doing so.  To learn about something, it is better to have a purpose or meaning connected to it.  By beginning the phases of time for day, you are establishing meaning.  The child will begin to notice that the sun is rising or setting.  The child can see that the moon is there in the sky at night.

Where is this on the Schedule of Activities 0-18 months?

Answer:

  1. Saturday and Sunday for Go outside and Explore it).

This is a bit of a stretch, but to really understand what is day, what is night, what is morning, and so forth, the baby needs to see it outside.

http://www.learningmathwithmom.com/sites/default/files/Schedule%20for%20the%20Week_zerotoeighteenmonths.pdf

Where is this on the Schedule of Activities 18 months-3 years? 

Answer:

  1. Tuesday for Numbers
  2. Saturday and Sunday for Go Outside and Explore It.  The child must know what day, night, morning, afternoon, evening, and night look like.  Go out and see the sunset or the stars!

http://www.learningmathwithmom.com/sites/default/files/ScheduleofActivitiesfor18mosto3yrsofage_0.pdf

Where is this on the Schedule of Activities for 3 to 5 years of age?

  1. Tuesday for Numbers (specifically counting), Quantity, and Measurement
  2. Fridays for Numbers (specifically counting and sequence)
  3. Every day for Play Time.  Go see the stars and the moon, the sun and the sunsets!

http://www.learningmathwithmom.com/sites/default/files/CALENDAR3yearsto5yearsofagePDF_0.pdf

Something to Think About:

For this activity, it really is simple to do that does not take any toy or APP to teach.  It really does not take the necessity of buying something extra to teach as well.  It simply takes mindfulness in pointing things out to our child that we may normally take for granted.  When it is time to eat, say what time it is every time.  When it is time to take a nap, what time is it?  When your child wakes up, what time is it and do we say “good morning”?  What time is it to go to bed?  All of these things we normally do not say out loud because we take for granted of what we already know.

With so much going on in our lives and during the day, it is easy to let the day pass without knowing where the time went.  For you and your child, this is a time to stop and be mindful of the time of the day and time you have with each other.  Sometimes taking a moment to pause and notice the change of position of the sun in the sky or the different phases of the moon can really teach your child to be in the moment and paying attention to details.  I truly have been taken things for granted about paying attention to change and to details because things sometimes feel like a blur or rushed during the day.  It is refreshing to point these things out to my kids an just pay attention to the little moments, the subtle changes of the day, and the time it takes for the moon and stars to change the look or position in the sky.  This is a way to become more mindful of things and learn math.

copyright 2013 learning math with mom

copyright 2013 learning math with mom

What Does 30 Seconds Feel Like?

timephotoofclock

As my first child was getting to understand when Mommy was stepping away (really to go use the bathroom) and did not know where I was going, he would start to cry.  For some reason or another, I started talking to him and telling him where I was going and to give me 30 seconds.  I would then start counting, mainly for him to still hear my voice.  Did this help him quiet down from the start? ….No, but overtime, I would continue doing this until he was comfortable with the fact that mommy was coming back.  Surprisingly, my phrase of “give me 30 seconds” is still something I use now that my oldest is 4, my second is 3, and my third is 3 months old.

Today, I began thinking that this gave my kids a sense of what seconds felt like.  To offer a perspective, 30 seconds to adults seems to go by fairly quickly.  However, to a small child/toddler, this could take forever.  Our sense of time progresses as we have more of a sense of what it really feels like.

As two little ones grew up from infants to toddlers to preschoolers, there now is a sense of what 1 minute actually feels like.  As my children were able to count to 30 and now to maybe 60 without help, they can understand what 60 seconds feels like by counting to that number.  Then have it explained that counting to 60 is 1 minute.  As they will get older and able to count further, they will get a sense of what 5 minutes, or longer feels like.

If you have itty-bitty ones, 5 or 10 seconds seems to be a bit much, but it is a start.  Have your itty-bitty sit there with you as you both whisper-count to 5 or 10.  This might even be more therapeutic for you since sometimes we do not get even five seconds of quiet time during the day. J Then try extending this to 15 to 20 seconds and then progress to 30 seconds.  Doing this with my four-year old is a treat since he is just a bundle of movement and sometimes doesn’t keep still in the afternoon.  It is nice to tell him to sit on my lap and I hug him whisper counting for 10 seconds or 15 to 20 seconds.  It really gives me a chance to show each of my children some overdue attention for the day.  🙂

The same goes for counting to 60, or even closing eyes for 1 minute, then 2 minutes, then up to 5 minutes.  I am actually not there yet, but for those of us who have older children this could be a way for them to take a moment of some quiet time for themselves.

In a nutshell, practicing with your child of what time feels like, will help them develop an idea of time.  We see time pass by with clocks and we know what time it is by looking at our phones, or watch.  We even know that time has passed by looking at how the day has changed outside.  These are good things to point out to your young child.  Along with that, it is also essential to have a sense of it by feeling it as well.

Where is this on the Schedule of Activities 0-18 months?

Answer:

  1. Wednesday for Counting

http://www.learningmathwithmom.com/sites/default/files/Schedule%20for%20the%20Week_zerotoeighteenmonths.pdf

Where is this on the Schedule of Activities 18 months-3 years? 

Answer:

  1. Tuesday for Numbers

http://www.learningmathwithmom.com/sites/default/files/ScheduleofActivitiesfor18mosto3yrsofage_0.pdf

Where is this on the Schedule of Activities for 3 to 5 years of age?

  1. Tuesday for Numbers (specifically counting), Quantity, and Measurement
  2. Fridays for Numbers (specifically counting)

http://www.learningmathwithmom.com/sites/default/files/CALENDAR3yearsto5yearsofagePDF_0.pdf

Something To Think About:

This is one of those math lessons, if you will, that really gets you and your child to just sit there and give a hug for 1 minute, a hug for 30 seconds, and frankly mommy and child time that is actually kind of quiet (with a few extra giggles).  Before I began typing this out, I really had to reflect on other times that I used time as a form of counting down, or waiting for something to happen.  I have been known to tell my kids that they have five more minutes until lights out for bed time.  At other times, they are told to hold on for a minute or wait a minute as I am able to finish the dishes or put the washed clothes in the dryer.  The afterthought is really about sensing time as it is and not always as a countdown, or anticipation of something else.  As a second thought to share, I am not trying to make time with your children, or even my time with my children a timed activity.  For this math lesson, it is about taking a pause to be in the moment with your child as this will also remind me to take those moments when I can. 🙂

copyright 2013 learning math with mom

copyright 2013 learning math with mom

Quantity and Quality Part II

lessononquantity4

lessononquantity5

It was out of curiosity to see if counting with my boys all this time would really help them to match the number with the quantity.  At this moment in time, my oldest was three and a half and my second oldest just turned two years old.

On the two white board easels, I divided the boards into sections with different quantities.  I purposely placed the numbers out of order to rule out that the boys are placing things in sequence and not actually counting out the quantities.  On the wall opposite of the easels, the number cards were placed there for the boys to use to match with the corresponding quantity.

lessononquantity3

At this time, only numbers 1-12 were on the easel boards because of the time it had taken me to draw each quantity.  This was also just a tester and in reality, they were just two and three years of age.  It was perfect for their attention span.

The boys were given the purpose of the activity, to match the quantity with the number card.  The two year old was to count the smaller quantities, while the three year old was given the larger quantities.  They knew which ones to count by me assigning each one to them.

If one of them chose the number card incorrectly, he and I counted the quantity together.  Looking back, this really helped them both because it was okay for them to get it wrong with no worries because mommy was there to help.  This might have lowered the frustration level of doing this activity for the first time without lowering my expectations of them.  The entire activity only took about ten minutes from start to finish with about five minutes of prep time from my end of things.  What resulted is what you see above with the first two pictures.

It taught me that my boys were able to do very well with matching the quantity with the number card.  What was impressive was how they could count the 10, 11, and 12 without losing one’s place and having to count all over again.  Later on, I did this with my two year old by himself for all quantities 1-12 with little to no difficulties.  I continue to do this with my boys, but with larger quantities now and including zero.

This activity did not cost much to put together.  The number cards were from the dollar store, but you can probably go online to print your own out.  You can also get some index cards and write your own numbers on them.  If you don’t have easels or the time to draw each quantity, I have them on word document so that you can print them out to use for your child(ren).  Click on the following link to access the document.

http://www.learningmathwithmom.com/sites/default/files/quantityandqualityIIpdf.pdf


Where is this on the Schedule of Activities from 18 months to 3 years of age?

Answer:

  1. Tuesday on Numbers, especially in quantity

http://www.learningmathwithmom.com/sites/default/files/ScheduleofActivitiesfor18mosto3yrsofage_0.pdf

Where is this on the Schedule of Activities from 3 to 5 years of age?

Answer:

  1. Tuesday on Quantity

http://www.learningmathwithmom.com/sites/default/files/CALENDAR3yearsto5yearsofagePDF.pdf

Something to Think About:

Sometimes when we feel that things are a race, we focus on the finish line than how to prepare and endure the race….the journey.  If we just focus on the finish line, we might frustrate our little ones when it was not necessary.  If you felt frustrated learning something at some moment in your life, it may have turned you against learning about that, period.   Why would we then begin so early with our little ones to turn them off to learning when it can be enjoyable and your child knows that you are there to nurture him?  When my child feels frustrated, I am there to give him the tools to overcome it, but I am not going to directly place unnecessary frustration on him.

Again, as a parent, we might think we need to hurry up on teaching certain things to our children so that they won’t 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, literacy, and art 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.  I will say this over and over again because it is that important to know that you are doing a great job!

copyright 2013 learning math with mom

copyright 2013 learning math with mom

Quantity and Quality, Can We Have Both?

photoofnumbercards1

At times, we might think that there is a race of some kind to get our two year old to count to 20, or 30 and progress to count to 50 when they are 3 or 4 years old.  Some of us feel just fine about counting to 30 by the time our child is 3 or 4 years old.  We are all different in our desires for what we want our children to learn and I understand that.  In truth, it is not just about what the highest number our child can count to, but up to what number does our child understand the quantity that corresponds with it.   For example, my child can count to 40 at 4 years of age, but does he understand what 40 looks like or how much that is?  Would it be better for him to be able to count to 20 and understand the quantity of 20?  This is my debate on quantity versus quality.

When I say “quantity” in my title, I really mean the more numbers you can count to, instead of understanding the quantity of each number.  When I say “quality” in my title, it really focuses on the idea that my children can both identify a number and its quantity, the “how many and how much” of what the number looks like.

Think about the counting activities I have posted, it is the beginning of counting objects to actually see what five of something looks like.  For the activities focusing on more and less, this gives the child an opportunity to compare two different quantities.  A child automatically can tell which is more and which is less, especially when the child is dealing with goldfish crackers or notices that his/her sibling has more strawberries on the plate.  Then the idea is to match the quantity with the number that corresponds to it.

From my experience with my two boys, my 3 year old was ready to really “get it” when it came down to matching quantities with the number easily.  I am not saying he can do this up to 100, but the more numbers he can match the number with the quantity, the better his quality of understanding is.  For him to get to this place in understanding, I needed to help him with the counting activities I have shared with you for close to a year.

If I kept thinking that his learning is a race to get their first, the learning and teaching would be more frustrating than effective.  The quality of the learning and the results far outweigh the more numbers he can count to.  This is my opinion and I had to learn this as a parent.  The last thing I want to do as a parent is to frustrate my child because I somehow thought he was competing with other children.  A child as young as 4, 5, 6, or younger is much too young to start feeling frustrated when there is no need to.

The next blog to follow this one will give you an idea of what I am talking about.  I will share with you a quick learning activity that shows you how to have both, quantity and quality.

What Counting Activities am I referring to? 

  1. “Let’s Count to Ten!”

https://learningmathwithmom.wordpress.com/2013/05/14/lets-count-to-ten/

  1.  “Color, More Color, and Sneak in a 3”

https://learningmathwithmom.wordpress.com/2013/05/13/color-more-color-and-sneek-in-a-3/

  1. “How Many Hands?”

https://learningmathwithmom.wordpress.com/2013/02/17/how-many-hands/

  1.  “How many spoonfuls in a jar? How much cereal do we have? Let’s count and find out!”

https://learningmathwithmom.wordpress.com/2012/11/02/how-many-spoonfuls-in-a-jar-how-much-cereal-do-we-have-lets-count-and-find-out/

 

Something to Think About: 

Realizing that our country is always trying to compete globally with other countries in education, we feel that there is a race to push our kids to learn more and more and even more at an earlier age than we did.  Sometimes when we feel that things are a race, we focus on the finish line than how to prepare and endure the race….the journey.  If we just focus on the finish line, we might frustrate our little ones when it was not necessary.  If you felt frustrated learning something at some moment in your life, it may have turned you against learning about that, period.   Why would we then begin so early with our little ones to turn them off to learning when it can be enjoyable and your child knows that you are there to nurture him?  When my child feels frustrated, I am there to give him the tools to overcome it, but I am not going to directly place unnecessary frustration on him.

Again, as a parent, we might think we need to hurry up on teaching certain things to our children so that they won’t 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, literacy, and art 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.  I will say this over and over again because it is that important to know that you are doing a great job!

copyright 2013 learning math with mom

copyright 2013 learning math with mom

Letters and Numbers in One Morning

ABCblocks

After a few birthday parties, between my oldest and second oldest son, they accumulated about 3 sets of wooden blocks.  Of course they loved stacking them up and making buildings, but I wanted to figure out what I could do with them to teach about literacy and numeracy.  If you ever wondered what you can do with all those wooden blocks, here is something my second oldest and I did together.

At this moment in his life, he was a few months older than two years of age.  With my little learner, it was difficult to keep his attention when he knew mom was about to start a lesson.  He was the child that usually ran away when I said it was time for story time.  However, this really was something he found fun and it was building something, per say.

Together, we sang the alphabet and searched through the two buckets of blocks to create one row of the alphabet.  Then either he or I picked a wooden block from either of the two buckets and asked him what letter it was and what sound it made.  Then I asked him to match it to the letter on our alphabet row.  We continued to do this until we made the model below.  The numeracy part came afterward.

ABCblocks1

Starting with the letter A, I asked him to count how many “A”s there were.  This continued on until we went all the way to the letter Z.  Considering that hindsight is 20/20, what we could have done was write the letters in one column and the quantity of each letter block in another column.  So, this is something  to do if you have time and enough of an attention span from your little one.  This could be something to do after taking a break to do something else and coming back to chart it.

Do you need 2 to 3 sets of wooden alphabet blocks to do this lesson?  The answer is no. I’m sure you can go to the dollar store and get 3 or 4 sets of alphabet cards for three to four dollars total.  You might have so many of these flashcards and lost a few here and there and wondered what you can do with them now.  This lesson would be perfect!

If your child has lots of toys, or lots of little toys, then take some pieces of paper and write each letter of the alphabet.  Put those pieces of paper in order together.  Then model in front of your child for the first few toys.  For example, take that car and overly enunciate the first letter C.  Ask your child what letter does this car start with.  Then place the car under the letter C.  Repeat this until you have at least three to four toys under each letter.  Remember, not every letter needs to have three to four toys associated with it.   The idea is to recreate the second picture above.

For those of you who are wondering why the second picture looks a little familiar from your days in middle school or high school, this is because this is a physical graph collecting the graphs.  This particular graph could be called a line plot or a bar graph of sorts.  If you have a family of children with different ages, you can extend this to your older kids when learning or reviewing about graphs.  An extension to this is calculating the percentage of As, Bs, etc. This data can be displayed in a circle graph/pie graph, tally chart, or frequency chart.  This area would be a piece of data and statistics.  Now you have a lesson for your little ittie bitties and your older ones.

Where is this on the Schedule of Activities from 0-18 months of age? 

Answer: 

  1. Mondays on “ABCs”
  2. Wednesday on Numbers (Counting)

http://www.learningmathwithmom.com/sites/default/files/Schedule%20for%20the%20Week_zerotoeighteenmonths.pdf

 

Where is this on the Schedule of Activities from 18 months to 3 years of age?

Answer:

  1. Tuesday on Numbers
  2. Wednesday on Sorting

http://www.learningmathwithmom.com/sites/default/files/ScheduleofActivitiesfor18mosto3yrsofage_0.pdf

 

Something To Think About:

For something so simple as wooden blocks, or using flashcards and toys, you as an educator to your child can develop their sense of letter recognition, phonemic awareness, and numeracy skills.  This is something that can be used for families who have children from 18 months to middle school.  If your older child is reluctant for his/her parent to teach a math lesson, maybe he or she can teach the younger brother or sister.  This is a character building exercise as well as trying to persuade your older child to learn at home and to change the thinking that learning doesn’t stop in the classroom.

Again, as a parent, we might think we need to hurry up on teaching certain things to our children so that they won’t 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, literacy, and art 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.  I will say this over and over again because it is that important to know that you are doing a great job!

copyright 2013 learning math with mom

copyright 2013 learning math with mom