Friday, September 20, 2013

Make Counting Meaningful!

Children may be able to count, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5. But do they attach meaning to these numbers? That is key in early numeracy. Help children picture what numbers mean.  
            Using one of our favorite books, you can integrate ideas. Read a Llama, Llama book by Anna Dewdney. Remember that these books promote rhyming, a key skill in early childhood.  
Discuss what healthy foods a llama might eat. I usually pose silly questions like, “Would a llama eat chocolate ice cream?”  Get children answering “No!” with glee. Then ask, “What would you eat that is healthy? What would a llama eat that is healthy?” Prompt with food like carrots.
Use the pictures below to ask, “Which bunch shows one carrot? Which shows three carrots?” Follow by asking children to find one of an object in the room. Continue with other objects. This helps integrate rote counting and meaning of number.
Look, in a brief time frame, you have encouraged rhyming (literacy/ phonemic awareness) healthy eating (science), and numeracy understanding (math). WOW! 

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