Friday, February 1, 2008

My favorite math manipulative

I have to say I could really throw out all my other math manipulatives except for my base ten blocks.

I use these more than anything else I own and they are great for teaching so many concepts.

I love the wooden blocks!  They have become difficult to find as most homeschool suppliers sell the plastic sets now. :(

Today Mr. GT had the day off from work, so he and Sunshine spent the WHOLE day out running errands!  Isn't he sweet?

I've been meaning to play the "trading" game with Pepper for weeks now, but it is impossible with the little man around.  So we got out the base ten blocks and two dice.  We took turns shaking the dice and taking as many unit blocks as the dice scored.  When we had collected 10 unit blocks, we got to trade them in for a ten stick. Then, you guessed it!  When we had 10 ten sticks, we traded them in for a hundred-flat.

I love this game as a basis for building the ideas we'll need to begin two-digit addition and subtraction with borrowing and carrying.  And strangely, my kids have all LOVED this game.  It is so simple, yet it's fun.  I remember one night (long ago!) Rose Bud and I played to 1000!

Even Banana Boy got to play.  He started out as my partner, shaking the dice for us and counting out the blocks.  But as soon as I showed him how to trade, he caught on and soon wanted to play by himself.  He worked on simple counting, the trading and practicing his counting by 10s to find his score.

It's even a good spatial toy because the blocks only fit into the Rubbermaid container one way:  You have to put the 1000 block in first, then all the hundred-flats, then the ten-sticks and unit cubes.  Any other way (like just dumping them) and it's a no-go.

We also got a bunch done on the lapbooks.  Daisy is making a separate folder for each of the 4 Indian groups, so she is working on her Plains folder right now.  Pepper is making one double folder containing all four groups.

For geography, we are doing a couple of things this year.  We are using the Trail Guide to U.S Geography and doing the Geography Trails each day.  We are also pulling together a state summary sheet from a couple of different map books I've collected.  Daisy keeps track of the state, capital, date of statehood, motto, nickname, and area.  Pepper just writes out the state name, capital, year of statehood and nickname.  They both have stickers I made with the state bird, tree and flower to stick on their sheets.Daisy's Connecticut Page

Usually on Monday, we do the Geography Trails from TGtUSG for a state.  Tuesday we fill out the state sheet.  Wed. and Thurs. repeat, so we are covering two states a week.  We are memorizing the states and capitals.  On her own, Daisy is making a game to match the two.  And the girls have taught Sunshine the capital of Maine.  "Gusta!" he says.

Fridays we are using the Geography from A to Z and the Geo-Terms pages from History Scribe to study a geographical feature.  Today we learned about atolls and last week, archipelagos.  Pepper's Atoll Page

No comments: