Math can sometimes be overwhelming to young learners so why not make it fun. Practice basic skills over and over again with a few simple teacher tricks to keep it fun and always interesting. Small tangible items that can be easily picked up by little fingers are perfect for math time, both in and out of the classroom.
In celebration of fall we have been practicing addition using apples trees. Bright red pom poms represent the apples and small wooden trees from my local craft store are the perfect way to teach addition skills.
I start off by reciting a word problem to my little one.
" Tommy climbed an apple tree and picked two apples, Suzie climbed another tree and found three apples. How many did they find all together?"
My daughter listens to my words and then uses the pom poms to show the problem. 2 on one tree 3 on the other. This evening she even got out one of her number puzzles to show the numbers of the apples on the trees.
One of the best things about little siblings is they always want to do what the older sibling is doing . So why not use that to your advantage. My daughter helped teach her 18month old brother how to point to the pom pom as she counted the numbers. He can't quite say numbers just yet but he did point and say something. Having her teach her brother helps to reinforce those newly learned math skills.
So as your child is eating breakfast in the morning, or waiting for dinner at night, keep a ziploc bag of pom poms, beads, buttons or whatever else on hand and have them work on their addition problems. Change out the wooden cutouts and objects for the season to keep it fresh and fun for them. You will find that their skills will be stronger just by adding in a few minutes into each day to brush up on their math skills. This will help to reinforce math vocabulary and build upon their natural curiosity for learning. Which will help prepare them for the classroom and all the math fun yet to come. While having a little fun at the same time.
Use the freebie below to encourage those new math skills!
If you are looking for a way to get a little more math in your day check out our Morning Math Minute set in our Simply Sprout Store. Have your students or children learn about numbers 1 - 30 with these quick math minute activities.