Preschool materials & activities in math
Even before children enter school, young children show a natural interest in math. They count steps as they go up stairs and are interested in the patterns in objects and in building with things like blocks. Children explore mathematics in the everyday sense of it and that is why providing a rich preschool environment specially tailored with math in mind will naturally engage the child. Modern research suggests that math ability is strongly linked to an inborn and primitive make-up and is established way before entering into a formal school setting. Still, in order to sharpen those inbred propensities the teacher or parent can help by organizing and preparing math-based materials. Find fun and interesting math activities here on Little Learner.
The National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC) and NCTM issued a joint statement to “affirm that high-quality, challenging, and accessible mathematics education for 3- to 6-year-old children is a vital foundation for future mathematics learning.” Learning math in preschool is more than counting and in identifying numbers. Preschoolers learn about spatial relationships and shapes by moving through their classroom and outdoor spaces and by manipulating toys such as puzzles and two- and three-dimensional shapes.
Children also demonstrate emerging awareness of measurement, long before they know how to use standard measurement tools, when they begin to notice differences in the height, weight, and length of various objects. Interactions in mathematics also support vocabulary development by describing things using verbs such as observe, predict, estimate, sort and experiment. By learning the nomenclature of objects and by describing the attributes of experiences such as sticky, dirty, roundish, big and small – children’s vocabulary in mathematics increases. These advancements also enhance reading achievement in the future as well. Experts in early mathematics agree that standards should be research based and should focus on “big” ideas, including numbers and operations, geometry and spatial relations, and algebraic thinking/problem solving.
HOW TO BRING MATH TO LIFE IN A PRESCHOOL CLASSROOM
CLASSIFICATION, SORTING & PATTERNING
COUNTING AND NUMERICAL SENSE EXERCISES
COOKING & MEASUREMENT EXPERIMENTS
EXPLORING SHAPES WITH GEOMETRY
LEARNING THE LANGUAGE AND VOCABULARY OF MATH
SPATIAL RELATIONS, COMPARING, CONTRASTING AND ESTIMATING