Friday, 18 October 2013

Preschool Guide to Math

Warning: A lot of links on this post but definitely worthy of your time.
So, don't be lazy, go read.

<<< >>>

 I heard Tiger singing the other day,
One plus one is two
Two plus one is three
(from Shichida song)

Correct, but when I ask him,
"If mama give you 1 sweet and papa give you one more,
how many sweets do you have?"
Confirmed. Not math genius.

Since I am not trained to be teacher, I have to ask Google.
First, must back up my teaching with science.
This article is useful

I was looking for a guide on preschool math when I found some I like:

1. Life of Fred (books)
2. Greg Tang (books)

At the end of the day, what I want to achieve is
still the same: LOVE OF LEARNING

What should your child learn in preschool math?
 Even if they didn't learn a single thing by end of preschool, at least make sure they
have some number sense

If you are happy that your 4 or 5 year old can recite
1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10
and trace those numbers on countless worksheets
you are in deep shit.
I know kids in our system who recites blindly from A-Z.
But when you show D individually, you get a ??????

Bottom line is,
they must understand that numbers represent a set of things.
Like how words represent an emotion.
Otherwise, you are wasting your money.

Just like
how kindy waste one month preparing for concert
by making children conform to a routine in a monkey suit. 
Monkey suit also you must fork out own money.
Just that alone turns me off.
No, thank you, I'd rather spend that money watching paint dry.

 My advise: PLAY
but not just plain play, SNEAKY PLAY

At this age, they must be able to touch and feel math.
Use anything you can manipulate.

 For more ideas, you can refer to Karen Cox's prekinders
Choose a guide that you are comfortable with and stick with that!

  • Numbers & Counting
  • Grid Games
  • Matching
  • Shapes & Geometry
  • Pattern Block Mats
  • Sorting
  • Patterns
  • Sizes
  • More, Less, Same
  • Estimation
  • Money
  • Count to ten
  • Count a set of five objects using one-to-one correspondence
  • Identify the numerals 1-5
  • Compare sets of objects and describe them using “more,” “less,” “equal,” or same
  • Use correct vocabulary to compare objects (“big,” “small”; “long,” “short”; “more,” “less”; “heavy,” “light”)
  • Use words that identify time of day (“morning,” “afternoon,” “night,” “day”)
  • Identify circles, squares, rectangles, and triangles when shown models
  • Sort objects by their attributes (color, size, shape, and so on)
  • Use words that indicate position (“in,” “out,” “beside,” “over,” “under,” “between”)
  • Recognize and copy patterns in songs, rhymes, and body movements
Tiger loves worksheets too but I try not to do too many.
He is kinda btw a preschooler and kindergartener's level at the moment.
So, too simple a task...BORING!
To difficult and he becomes frustrated. Like writing numbers, etc

I try to challenge him creatively by asking him to create games of his own.

Here's what we did last night.
 Prop: Skeletons (RM 5.90 from Memory Lane)

Matching with pipe cleaners (Daiso)
It was Tiger's idea to make a cross.

More complicated matching.
He was to match with the pipe cleaners.
Problem: too short.
Solution: He said, Nevermind, can ady

His work
Essentially correct but so grrrr....crooked!
I was telling myself, " not correct his work. Breathe"
Must. Control. Self.

He came up with helicopter skeleton.
Excellent fine motor work.
Again, if he was in kindy,
I doubt this kind of non-conforming behavior is encouraged.

 Matched with musical bells.
Ring according to number of skeletons

Going to sneak in some addition work tonight.
Again, me no expert. Just a mom, doing her best.
Following my nerdy boy's lead.
We will probably use Singapore Math soon.
Will keep you guys posted on that.

I read somewhere that our educational system is from the Industrial Ages.
Where silence, obedience, robot-like factory workers are created.
Despite new findings, it will take many many years before changes are made.
It's okay, we can beat the kid at a time.
Gawd, I hope I am still so spirited when Tiger's 10 years old.

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