Wednesday, February 27, 2013
Teaching Addition the easy way!
Hello All, I just wanted to share some ideas for teaching addition to the four year olds we all love. I like to start out by using manipulatives for the children to count. Today I used paper hearts because the paper we were working on was left from Valentine's day. As we read through the story problem I had the children circle each number. They then identified the number for me. We counted enough hearts to represent each of the numbers and then counted them all together. Seems simple right? But in the brains of 4 year olds putting two groups together is not always that easy. First,there can be a color divide, getting them to continue past the first color set fluently into the next color set is a challenge. Second, they are used to rote counting without manipulatives in front of them. So to get around these problems I broke my groups up into small groups and placed their papers on a clipboard. We worked together on the rug to get through 2 word problems. After circling the numbers and reading them to me we set out our hearts and began to count, instead of stopping to correct when they stopped at the first set I just pointed to the next heart and said the next number. Then the child was able to go on from there. After we wrote our answer on the page I explained to them that when we are putting groups together we have to count all of the objects not just one group. Then there is writing and reading the number sentence. I used a white board as a visual to help them see what I wanted them to write and where. I drew the boxes on the white board the same as they were on the worksheet. I reminded them to write small so they would have enough room for all of the numbers. As we went through the process of writing the number sentence I showed them how to write the plus sign and the equal sign and then showed them how to read the number sentence. I had each child read me the number senence after to make sure they understood. And that was it, as a follow-up I had a simple addition worksheet with counting manipulatives waiting for them in the next small group rotation. here are 2 examples of how my class did with this activity. The one in orange is from one of my middle of the road stuents and you can see she had no trouble following along with me. The blue one is from my lowest student who has low muscle tone, she understands the concepts but I still need to write the numbers for her in yellow for her to trace because her hands are so weak. They did so well on this that I knew they were beginning to understand the true process of addition. Best of luck with your cuties, they can do it! (the worksheet came in a TpT packet and is copyrighted by The Teacher Wife) Till next time! Christine