Friday, June 11, 2010

Starting into math

Nugget's been into numbers more lately. She's counting things and counting on her own, just for fun. In the car the other day she started counting to herself. We started to hear her in the 30s... "thirty-eight, thirty-nine, thirty-ten". We corrected her "thirty-ten" to forty and she kept going. So we helped her with the names for each of the ten increments and she just kept counting, up to 100.

The sticker number line is still out, and she does that nearly every day. I also put out the spindle box, but I'm not expecting that to be used much quite yet.

My husband and her had a discussion the other day about his iPod holding 1000 songs. He was trying to explain a thousand to her, relatively unsuccessfully. When I heard this, I was thrilled! I went into the homeschooling closet and pulled out the decimal tray. I was able to show her one bead, a ten bar, a hundred square, and a thousand cube. Man, those thousand cubes are gorgeous! Montessori math materials are just great.

Nugget also spent some time tracing the sandpaper letters and we matched lower case to upper case. I wasn't sure where she was in her knowledge of upper case, since we've never explicitly taught them to her. But she knew them all! It's amazing what kids pick up.

And, it's not typically Montessori, but Nugget likes it -- I've put out pages from the Kumon tracing workbook. I have them in sheet protectors and have a wet-erase marker so that we can just wipe off the pages and use them again. When workbooks cost as much as Kumon ones do, you don't want to get just one use out of them!


  1. Regarding your child saying "thirty-ten"...

    She is naturally using the "math way" of counting! I heard a woman present on this topic at the 2005 American Montessori Society annual conference, and I found it fascinating. I cannot find her document from that particular session online, but here is another one (also regarding early childhood education mathematics):

    I love the Montessori math materials as well. I never actually enjoyed math until I began teaching in a 1st - 3rd grade Montessori classroom. I thought it was all amazing and was thrilled that I finally enjoyed (and understood so much more!) math!

    How exciting that your child is entering this "sensitive period!" Have fun! :)


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