Friday, 13 April 2012

A Maths Toolkit

I was discussing with the parents of the children that I child mind recently about how they learn about maths. the nurseries that they attend are teaching them ordinal numbers, days of the week, addition and subtraction when these children don't consistently count ten objects accurately. Neither can they use the words that they know for a useful purpose, to them it is merely another nursery rhyme that they sing along to. We are required though to work alongside other settings so with this in mind as well the ethos of MY setting, which is natural learning through play, I had a think about what I could do to ground the words they were learning at nursery into something meaningful for them.

I have often observed the children playing with calculators, measuring things with my husband's tape measure, counting the steps they take, well, you know how much maths goes on in every day life don't you?!! I decided to gather together real resources that adults use into a 'toolkit' for the children to access and include in their play.

This is what we have so far:

  • A marking gauge.
  • A spirit level.
  • A right-angle measure.
  • A 360 degree angle measure.
  • A 10m measuring reel.
  • A luggage weight gauge.
  • A forehead thermometer.
  • A sand timer.
  • A compass.
  • A measuring jug.
  • Number strip.
  • Counting bead strings in fives and tens.
I have also printed out coin fans, number word fans and place value fans, laminated them and secured them together with book rings. I will observe the children using it and add more things to it as I go. Whilst thinking of ideas for this I found some useful information here about tool kits as well as all aspects of children in the early years exploring number.

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