Do you have a lawyer in your house? No, not the kind that actually has a degree, earns a salary, and is an adult. I'm talking about the free-lance, unschooled, and relentless child legal expert who calls you out on every breach of fairness or word choice. I have one. He's 9. One day, if … Continue reading Be Logical, Part 1
It is Pi Day. March 14. 3/14. Sigh. I am not into it, honestly. I feel like it's contrived. Maybe you can convince me otherwise. In the meantime... If you, like me, are not planning to bake OR eat pie today, why not bake something. Even if it's cake from a box. Or brownies. Or … Continue reading Pi Day
Here's another way to reinforce multiplication concepts with your elementary school kids. You just need a hundreds table and some markers. You can present it like a puzzle. Or you can be fancy and tell your kids that they're going to make the Sieve of Eratosthenes. Yes, that will get their attention. Here's the quickie … Continue reading More Multiplication Mastery
It's the type of question young children are always asked: "How many animals do you see?" "How many cars are there?" "How many children are in your class?" "How many sheep are in this picture?" These are good questions. They usually have a clear and correct answer. That's nice. What if they didn't? What if, … Continue reading How Many?
In an earlier episode...the 5-year-old told his father that I had said there was no 15 when skip-counting by 5's. I laughed and let it go, figuring this would be a self-correcting issue. And it was! Here's how it happened... The 5-year-old has a 7-month-old cousin. He loves her. He holds her. He snuggles her. … Continue reading He Finally Found 15! Sort of.
What can you do instead of flash cards to practice multiplication facts with your kids? Multiplication and division fluency is a cornerstone of developing a strong mathematical foundation. The middle and high school students I tutor often struggle with the time and effort it takes to retrieve a calculation fact they were assumed to have … Continue reading Ditch The Flash Cards
I can't say that I've ever been very intrigued by tessellations. I needed a good activity to do with pre-school-aged children, though, and tessellations combine patterns and crafts...always a winner with the three to four year old set. As usual, anytime I dismiss something as not-so-interesting, I ultimately discover how mistaken I was. It's great … Continue reading It’s Great to Tessellate!
"But you can just use your credit card, Mom." This is the response from the kids every time I tell them we are not buying what they want because it costs too much. This scenario has played out so often that I have realized two things. First, my response isn't really communicating what I mean, … Continue reading Ask for a Receipt
Or "How Math Talk is Like the Sex Talk." Did that get your attention? Hope so. but remember, this is a blog about teaching kids math, so... Only answer the question they ask. Parents joke about this rule as it applies to kids' questions about human reproduction, but it applies to almost any subject. Even … Continue reading Only Answer the Question They Ask
It's good to have quick and easy mathy moments at your fingertips for young children. Especially the kind that look like fun games. Today the 5-year-old was being...well...a 5-year-old. He was just home from school and his 8-year-old brother didn't want to play with him. So he lay on the floor and cried. I asked … Continue reading A Quick Colorful Game