Monday, July 1, 2013

Mental Math with Mama

Daily we do Mathtime with Mama, I sit with them and do math. Depending on the other writing tasks of the day, it can be a handwritten page(about once a week), online math ( or are the current ones) or Mental Math with Mama.
This is how we do Mental Math with Mama:

Typically we have counters or fingers at the use. I will tailor the math to the child's interests.
This morning the 6 year old and I were working on 5's and adding and subtracting 2s and 3s . This leads to problems like:
There are 5 dogs playing and 2 more join them. How many dogs are playing? If she gets it we do the next. If she doesn't I use my fingers and state it again. Or I will use manipulatives(commercially purchased, acorns, rocks, counting bears, blocks, buttons etc). Generally though my fingers are handiest :)  

(I have no problems borrowing  the child's or a siblings' fingers if the problem gets bigger )

 This child has a LOVE of animals especially dogs. That means we do math using dogs, puppies, dalmatians, goldfish, catfish, etc. With the oldest it's horses, foals and cats. The youngest likes whatever she hears her sisters using. It makes it fun and keeps them engaged on the math- which is the focus, but we are also keeping learning fun- which is the other point :)

I will do math problems until they get tired and they have to finish the last one. This tends to be   2x their age minus one problem is enough. But I go farther until they get antsy. Once that happens we celebrate what they did and they go back tot he table or go play or read to sister- what ever is next.

We are working on building confidence in themselves :)
So while the Math skill is important, so is their ability to end on a positive note!

Thanks for reading! What do you do for daily math?


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