Math is everywhere. It’s true. When you’re unschoolers it’s easy to see how math can, and is, a part of everyday life.
His piece of cake is bigger than mine!
There are 4 cookies left, so why don’t we each get two?
When I’m 12 you’re going to be 13 and Juliette will be 9. Right, Mommy?
I don’t want 30 minutes for rest time, I only want 20 minutes.
Helping around the house, the kids sort and put away the silverware. They match the socks when we fold laundry. They sort the trash from the recycling. Yep, preschool math is everywhere. I’ve talked about their calendars and learning about even and odd numbers in this post.
The kids learn a lot about math through board games. Some of our favorites right now are Uno, Sum Swamp and Fish Sticks. Sum Swamp is so. much. math. I thought since the addition and subtraction were so obvious that it wouldn’t be so well liked. I was wrong. The kids love it and ask to play it all the time. At first they needed an adult to play, but now the two of them can play independently. Bonus!
An absolute favorite in our house is this magnetic pattern set. This Amazon delivery was over a year and a half ago, and since then it has been played with more days than not. We also like this drill set that works on patterns too, although it doesn’t get played with quite as much.
My kids are always counting. Recently it’s to 30 to see if they can hold their breath that long. This apparently is a rite of passage of childhood?? I don’t understand it now, but 30 years ago I was doing it too. They now count to 100 when it’s their turn to seek during hide and seek. They’ve been asking what the last number is and are not satisfied the concept of infinity. Everything has to have an end, Mommy! They don’t believe me…yet. They’ll figure it out.
Honest to goodness there have been times in this house when I have had to say “Stop doing math and eat!” Weird, huh? I hope their inquisitiveness continues, it’s just sometimes they need to eat. And sometimes I need a moment of silence.
Since my kids show a real desire to learn more math I also have a box in the family room that we call the math box. We’re nerds that way. In the box there’s a geoboard, abacus, clock, and counting bears. I especially love this Melissa and Doug’s version of a clock (they have a few!) because the numbers come out and can be used for so many other math activities. When my kids were learning to write their numbers they would put these wooden numbers in front of them to copy. Our math box also has some other loose parts like coins and beads for counting, sorting and making patterns. The kids don’t realize they are doing math all the time. So, when I bring out the math box they feel like they’re really learning. Look, Mommy, we are doing our math! Whatever makes these little mathematicians happy!