I find numbers and math in general super fascinating. There, it’s been said.
It’s out of the bag. I am a bit of a numbers-nerd.
But they are very cool – how they all fit and work together. I love introducing my little ones to some of these neat math concepts. Pretty big concepts really, but of course at a level fitting for them.
Speaking of which, have you downloaded your FREE 10-Week Math Bundle yet? It has 150 math word problems, and each day has three difficulty levels—perfect for children ranging from PreK to Grade 4!
The latest idea I have had for finding playful ways for my kids to interact with my best friends (of course by this, I mean numbers) is with these neat number blocks.
I took some Jenga-style blocks (I am pretty sure I got this big pack at Ikea for next to nothing) and added numbers to them. Since I am becoming slightly less impulsive these days, I printed the numbers off of the computer and taped them onto the blocks so they are not permanent. Since, of course, I will have a different idea in but a few weeks.
I added the numbers 1-5 to the blocks. I think we used about 10 blocks of each number.
Next, I wrote out a few little challenges:
- “Can you build a house worth 23?”
- “Can you build a tower worth 14?”
- “How much is your house worth?”
Things like that.
I set it all up in a neat little basket so I can pop it onto our math shelf. I have been so happy with the math and play I have been seeing!
Sam has been practicing ‘counting up’ when adding. If he is trying to gather blocks worth 23, he begins with a 5 and adds a block worth 3 counting up aloud (6, 7, 8 as he taps the block 3 times), then he gets a 4 block and continues counting (9, 10, 11, 12). When he gets to 23 he then has to make a decision on which blocks he needs to keep him at that exact number. If a 4 was too much, he tries a 2, for example.
Another neat piece of math that has come into play with this activity is finding out about equivalents. When building his towers sometimes Sam decides he needs more blocks. Recognizing his tower still needs to be worth 23, he swaps some blocks—a 3 block for three 1 blocks for example.
Those swaps are pretty nice and simple, but I love watching him make swaps when the 1 blocks are gone. He is then learning that two 2 blocks can be swapped for a 4 block, or two 3 blocks can be swapped for three 2 blocks. Numbers are so cooperative!
Interestingly, when you ask Sam, he says he doesn’t like math. He thinks math is boring (and he says it with an eye roll and sigh exactly like a certain older sister). Imagine his surprise when I told him that this riveting challenge he had been absorbed in was none other than math.
And furthermore, that he was a natural! Just like his sister, though she is too busy finding ways to make math boring to love it just yet. But she will. And so will my boys.
Yes, one day we will all be a happy loving family—my husband and I, our 4 lovely kids, and a whole slew of number equations. I can hardly wait.
I hope you had a great weekend, thank you so much for reading!
P.S. Don’t forget to grab your FREE 10-Week Math Bundle!