Toddlers

A Family Channukah Problem

How many candles do we need for our Channukiah on Channuka?

The festival of Channukah is eight days long. For each of the eight days, we light a candle in the Channukiah – one on the first day, two on the second day, three on the third etc. Sounds simple, right? Well, yes and no.  After each night the candles, which were lit on this night, will have burnt out and will need to be replaced on the next night. This adds up to a lot of candles over the eight days of Channukah. We also must not forget the candle […]

Exploring 3D Shapes Using Lego

Recently we wrote about 3-Dimensional drawing. This can be a lot of fun and an excellent way to strengthen spatial skills. Naturally we became very excited when one of our readers shared a picture of her toddler experimenting with 3-Dimensional shapes. We love her idea, it is a brilliant way of introducing the concepts of 3D drawing, discussed in our earlier article, with your toddler.

Stefanie Schwartz has drawn the front view of various shapes for her toddler to replicate using Lego blocks. Once the object has been built using the lego blocks her child is then able to see […]

Maths Play: Making 10

Understanding and being able to quickly recognise which pairs of numbers group together to make 10 is an extremely useful numeracy skill for children to have. It assists greatly with quick skills in addition, subtraction and multiplication as well as laying some great building blocks for problem solving skills. If you can easily recognise that 7 add 3 gives you 10, then even adding numbers like 67 add 4 becomes easier because you are able to recognise that 67 needs 3 more to reach 70, and you have one extra so the answer is 71. Having a ten digit […]

Dinner Time Maths – Equivalent Fractions With Bread

Dinner time is the perfect time for conversations and a great opportunity to engage with your children. The idea of Dinner Time Maths is to add a small spark of maths to the conversation. Discuss a mathematical idea as a family or solve a problem together.

I was reviewing equivalent fractions recently with a Year 7 girl. She understood the steps, realising that if she multiplies the numerator by a number she must then do the same to the denominator. She knew that the same goes for division as well. It was when I drew her a diagram and showed […]

x y z is as Easy as 1 2 3

A recent study just published in the journal Developmental Science looked at the ability of children aged between 4 and 6 to do basic algebra.  It was discovered that children of these ages, before any formal lessons have been taught, have a natural ability to do basic algebra. They used the “Approximate Number System” or “number sense” which is one’s natural ability to estimate the magnitude of a group without relying on language or symbols.  Our innate ANS is said to probably be an evolutionary adaptation which helped humans to survive in the wild.
What is interesting is that if […]

Dinner Time Maths – Skipping Koalas

Dinner time is the perfect time for conversations and a great opportunity to engage with your children. The idea of Dinner Time Maths is to add a small spark of maths to the conversation. Discuss a mathematical idea as a family or solve a problem together.
This is a well known, popular puzzle with variations around the world. The aim is to move the yellow koalas from the left to the right and the green koalas from the right to the left. Playing this game over the dinner table will inevitably generate wonderful conversations, help your children to develop problem […]

Add This To Your Shopping List

Doing your weekly shopping can be a great opportunity for incidental learning and fun. A lot can be achieved through simple conversations and interactions. Here is an activity that encourages your child to help you with the shopping, all the while learning a set of invaluable skills.
Start by choosing a way in which you’d like your child to categorise the items in your trolley. Next decide on two to four categories into which they can sort your shopping.
Depending on your child’s age your groups can be as simple as hard versus soft or separating into big, medium and small […]

Dinner Time Maths – How Have You Used Maths Today?

Dinner time is the perfect time for conversations and a great opportunity to engage with your children. The idea of Dinner Time Maths is to add a small spark of maths to the conversation. Discuss a mathematical idea as a family or solve a problem together.

Help your children appreciate the importance of maths in their everyday life.
Ask your children how they used maths in their day today. Start by telling them how you used maths in your day. Perhaps you had to calculate the GST on an account, maybe you checked the amount of change you were given at […]

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    Dinner Time Maths – Lollies Lollies I love to eat – Skip Counting by 3

Dinner Time Maths – Lollies Lollies I love to eat – Skip Counting by 3

Here is a fun poem to share with your children over the dinner table. It’s a bit silly but a lot of fun. It teaches skip counting by 3’s. Try come up with a poem of your own over dinner to skip count by twos, threes, fours or fives. This could be quite a laugh at the dinner table. Thinking of rhyming words and coming up with a poem as a family is not only great fun but it is also excellent for your children’s cognitive and language development. Throw in the skip counting as the theme for your […]

Patterning – The Foundation Blocks Of Algebraic Thinking

Patterns serve as the foundation blocks of algebraic thinking. Through patterns and sequences children learn predictive reasoning and logic, which forms the cornerstones of Algebra.
Patterns exist naturally around us in everyday life and add a symmetry, beauty and comfort to the world around us. The simplest pattern that babies learn from an early age is day, night, day, night. When babies learn and understand that this pattern exists, they have a sense of security as they can predict what comes next.
We can start teaching our babies patterning from very early on and build on the complexity as the child […]