Saturday, February 12, 2011

Spicing Up Math

It is challenging at times to find a lesson plan that will engage both my three and five year old.  I am loving how Singapore Math begins with the roots of math concepts. Elijah, my five year old, seems to really enjoy the activity books. My three year old, Tad, is very active and requires a more hands on approach. It is working well for me, at the moment, to give Tad some free time while Elijah works on his books. This amounts to thirty minutes broken up into three ten minute breaks for Tad. I fill the rest of our home school time with lessons/activities that are fit for both boys.

Recently we started a new routine and the boys could not enjoy it more. I took a collection of old glass spice jars, cleaned them out, and scrubbed off the labels. Next, I used a paint marker to number the jars on the top of the lid.

The boys have instruction to fill the jars with small items in quantity to the written number on the jar. I let the boys loose in the house and backyard for this task. They select the jar and we note the number on the jar together. Then, they race off and return to the home school room with the jar filled. Lastly, we count the contents and make any corrections before displaying them on our rack.

Tad often has an inaccurate amount in jars higher than the number five. However, his counting skills are improving every time we recount his filled jar. He is eager to make the corrections and receive another jar to fill. The boys are also learning space and size concepts with this activity. Everyday the jar items get more interesting. Yesterday, a doll leg was compromised by this routine.

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