I'll tell you now, maths is my weakspot - I am truly dreading the day that Vinnie comes home with some algebra homework and asks for help. Right now though, I can just about cope with introducing preschool maths concepts to him and I thought I'd share some ways to make maths fun and relevant for your kiddos too...
|Cutting up Fractions|
2. Playing with Legos - There are lots of ways Legos can be used mathematically - couting, colour sorting, shape recongition, patterning, 2d and 3d shapes, area. Check out this fun idea to measure with Lego from Nurturestore
|Introducing 3d with Legos|
|Thomas the Tank Addition & Subtraction|
3. Thomas Addition - This one is probably better for slightly older kids, but was inspired by my friend's son who knows all the names and numbers of all the Thomas the Tank characters by heart (so does his poor mum now too!) If you're looking for a more generic idea, you could use numbered train carriages or toy cars in the same way.
4. Measuring Sticks - if your kiddo is anything like mine, every trip out of the house sees us returning with a collection of sticks! Here I used white paint to make a simple measuring stick to start to introduce the concept of bigger and smaller etc. You could also crack out the heavy duty tools and practise measuring with a tape measure.
|Counting with Cars|
5. Counting practise - Probably the first 'maths' you do with your kiddo, but probably don't even realise you're doing it! Counting objects (rather than just counting aloud) will make their learning more relevant and fun for them.
6. Sequencing - Introducing concepts such as larger than and smaller than, putting things in size order is another pre-maths skill. And noticing the different characteristics of objects that belong in the same family is a useful visual learning tool.
|Maths concepts with Sensory Play|
7. Water and Sensory Play - You might not even realise the maths skills and learning opportunities involved in pouring water between two bowls, scooping beans in a sensory tub or mixing two ingredients together. Kids learn about volume and capacity, weights and measures as well as all the important sensory development. Cooking with kids is an ideal way to work all these skills and more - check out this post I wrote on the benefits of cooking with kids.
|Shape Recognition Robot|
8. Shapes - This little robot was part of a shape recognition game with Vinnie, then we worked on making pictures with the shapes. As well as naming them, shape play enforces spatial awareness and basic geometry skills (for example two squares together make a rectangle etc)
|Playing with Shapes|
9. Weighing - Here we use my digital kitchen scales, to help with number recognition, but a set of balance scales will reinforce the concepts of more/ heavier than and less/lighter than. Weigh toys and familiar objects, then add or take away some of them to further the learning.
|Army Man Sorting|