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Ci Maths Activities


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Hi there,

 

Just wondering if anyone can share with me any child initiated maths activities that you do. It would be very helpful to me. Thank you

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As my topic is Teddy bears this half term- the children have been making hats, belts, braclets and necklaces for their beras and themselves if they wanted to.

 

I also had lot of sticky shapes for the children to stick on and decorate the bits they made- i tried to encourage them to make a pattern.

 

they really enjoyed this and there was lots of talk related to measuring- and lots of independent estimation as well.

 

L

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this one is for writing numbers... as we dont put much of a direct focus upon this one we always have available drywipe pens and different number lines e.g. 1-5 1-10, 1-20 100 squares lines that count backwards 20-10 etc. We also have laminated on both sides acitivity cards were the children can trace over numbers (from activity books) this helps them to get their formation correct.

We have found that the children enjoy writing their numbers this way and often learn them without to much instruction from us at all.. We just intervene when needed to show correct formation/ challenge them to write higher numbers, reverse the number lien etc. :)

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Lovely ideas but I am just a little confused. To me child initiatied activites mean that they develop from the children's interests and we support them and lead them on. Directed activites are those where we add enhancements which dictate the choice for the child. I would include the above activites as this type of activity. Nothing wrong with that at all of course, we are there to encourage and stretch children by giving them skills and ideas to develop.

To me child intitated would be if a child came in and told us about the stranded whale last week, we would then follow it up and develop the theme depending on the child's interest. Or if a child was building something in the blocks we would discuss and support their agenda, perhaps finding a book, or picture or website about whatever it is they are doing- or helping them make labels, or introducing mathematical vocabulary in a natural way in the context eg. I wonder how many more blocks you will need to make that, or, do we have enough cars? How many more do we need then? You know the sort of thing.

They might be making something in the dough and we would talk to them about it with them in control.

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I agree with you JackieL, child initiated is more about the child choosing and leading the play/activity and the adult responding ( or not) with Interaction as appossed to intervention ( changing the play to the adults desired learning outcome)

 

For child intitiated maths activities you need to have resources that are made available for self selection that would encourage their use in a mathematical way, ie: the saucepans in role play which hold different capacity.

Sometimes an adult led activity can promote an interest, for example we do adult led, linked to a story, then the resources used are available on other days for children to self select and repeat what they did with them before, or to use as they wish. Our children are still playing with the bowls, beds and chairs from our Goldilocks story from week 2 of this term.

A bag of socks could lend itself to sorting games, a box of large materials could lend itself to making large patterns on the floor, a song bag/box near to a tape player that children can use freely for counting songs/activities. Once we emptied the book stand ( we have a white metal freestand one) and tied ribbons at the top, the children "came across it" and spent ages weaving patterns, noticing the different lengths of ribbon etc. We didn't rush over and start asking "which one is the longest" etc, we just observed and the children started talking between themselves about their experience, "Look mines longer than yours", "this is darker, thicker, silky" " in, out, in, out, wind it about" Two children played collaborately, one each side of the stand passing it "through" to each other. No way would I have come up with these ideas faced with a blank planning sheet, end of session Thursday when we have our planning meetings. :o

 

Have fun and let the children do more of their own planning, you'd be surprised, they are quite good at it. xD

 

Peggy

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We have begun to plan for 2 days each week then plan retrospectively allowing the children to develop the ideas. Children have much better imagination than adults given half a chance :)

 

Last week some of the children decided to pack suitcases from the spare clothes cupboard they sorted them into clothes for hot places and clothes for cold places there was no adult present and it had no connection to the adult focus (Scotland/Burns Night) Another group decided to make me and another teacher necklaces using different coloured beads some managed to make a repeating pattern. :D neither of these activities were planned or had any adult input.

Edited by MARl0N
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Following on from Peggy's ribbons on the book stand idea, there are lots of things you can "leave lying around" to see what happens - having numbers hanging on a washing line in the wrong order, leaving a magnetic shape picture out with plenty of spare magnetic shapes, having pattern-making equipment handy for the dough or sand tray, providing laminated dough boards out with pictures of different sized objects o them etc etc.

My children love making long "firemen's ladders" with mobilo and competing to see whose is the longest!

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The bear activity I mentioned above was a follow on from the childrens own interests- the children were using all the paper on the writing table and reals of sticky tape to make paper hats and bits for their bears- Therefore i extended the activity be putting out a selection of different size and shapes strips of card, staplers, selotape and sticky shapes.

It was only a suggestion that the children could make a pattern on the teddys hat or belt- many of the children just used the shapes to make a pretty hat.

 

We have many child initiated activities out each day- we may but out the resources and suggest what they can do with the resources- but allow the children to follow their own interests and try to plan and extend these.

 

one of the biggest problems we have is children who don't know how to play or develop their own ideas.... so the suggestions we give are meant as an idea to spur their own interests... they are not what the children have to do.

 

L

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I see your point Lorna, just last week a new girl started at my preschool. She is 4 and will go to school in September. She recognises numerals, counts to 100, knows one less than, one more than etc but....she has no concept of self selection or independent learning skills. She follows an adult around saying " I want....", it appears that her previous experiences have been that everything has been "provided to her or chosen for her". We have experienced this with other children before. The inability to make own choices and act upon them.

 

Still it is early days, once she see's her peers just "getting on with it"and she has plenty of encouragement from the staff to self select, I am sure she will adapt. :D

 

Peggy

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