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It's simple, math in preschool should be fun. In preschool we learn number recognition, how to count, simple addition and subtraction, and we learn to identify shapes and patterns. Of course, there's more. My students are learning spatial awareness, measurement, logic and reasoning, and classification. How do we make learning these things fun? Hands-on activities, for starters! The preschool curriculum that Experience Early Learning offers helps make math fun.
Preschoolers are meant to work with their hands. Each month I sit different manipulatives out that go along with our theme (we get something new each month in our curriculum box, too). Having new things to count each month helps keep them engaged! This month I set out our snowflake counters and the curriculum sent connecting cubes, which we have pretended were 'ice cubes.' We are working on 1:1 correspondence while we count our manipulatives. They also give the children a visual to work with - and let's face it, visuals are extremely helpful when it comes to math. Each month we get a set of story problems to work through and we use our manipulatives to help us solve them. They help them grasp the 'adding to' and 'taking away from' in math.
One thing my preschoolers are working on while practicing 1:1 correspondence is slowing down. We are working on saying the number (just one) as we point to each object, and not saying two or three numbers as we point to each object. This takes practice, and my preschoolers are getting better at it. Our math problems were part of Week 4, Lesson 17, North Pole, in our Ice Castle unit this month. I really like getting to work one-on-one with my students to solve these story problems. My morning class used our snowflake counters to solve these problems while my afternoon class used the connecting cubes.
My preschoolers had fun solving these math problems today, and keeping math fun for them is important to me. I'm so glad we get different math problems every month!