Our lovely daughter is lucky, she just doesn’t know it yet. She is very talented in regards to Math. However unlike her brother she sees no need to tap into that part of her knowledge. I think she is very lucky. Math does not come easily to many, both young and old. So the trick to expanding her Math knowledge and skills has been finding and creating anything fun so that she does not feel like she is doing any Math.
So now that we have entered into Spring I have had her doing caterpillar patterns. I draw them on my white erase board first. Then she uses the dot art paint to follow and expand on the pattern. I have also mixed it up and only verbally given her a color pattern or used pattern block shapes for the body (such as octagons, hexagons, etc.). She walks away with knowledge of mathematical patterns and feels like she completed an art project.
The fun does not have to end with caterpillars either. Patterns and be found in a lot of different things around us. To expand on her pattern work I asked her to come up with patterns of her own to work on her skills. She came up with some fun ones too. She found the following and repeated them:
- Listed out our dogs in age order (used 3 dogs)
- Listed out our dogs in size order (used all 6 dogs)
- List out our dogs in bark loudness order (used all 6 dogs)
- Arranged fruits from the ones she liked (used 4 different ones)
- Selected various shapes and drew them in a pattern
- Selected books to read from a pile in a cover color pattern
So, as you can see, math skills can be made fun for almost anyone if you can find that small way to connect the lesson to fun. They best part is when they do not know they are using those math skills you are teaching them either.
How do you make your math lessons fun?