Tuesday, November 3, 2015

Apple Math!

Continue the theme of apples by extending the idea into a math lesson. Cut different types of apples into slices and invite children to taste the slices. Tell them that they will be deciding which kind of apple they like best. We suggest using Granny Smith (green), Golden Delicious (yellow), and some type of red apple, like McIntosh. This will make the creation of the chart easier.

After children make a decision as to their favorite apple, ask them what color paper they need to represent their apple (yellow, green, or red). Often teachers precut apples, but why not turn this into a cutting exercise, too? Outline a simple apple shape on a square of paper. By making the outline basic and by putting it on a manageable piece of paper, small hands can handle cutting out their own apples. Sometimes large sheets of paper are difficult for children to turn, as turning paper is often the way they cut in the beginning. By putting the shapes on smaller paper, the task is more age-appropriate.
Simple shapes on appropriately sized paper make for valuable cutting practice.
Remind children who might be perfectionists that apples come in all different shapes and no apple is perfectly formed. This gives children “permission” to make cutting mistakes.   
Apples come in all shapes and sizes so a perfectly cut apple is not necessary.
Make a chart on large paper with the apple categories. Do this with the children so they can see how to make their own chart. We usually turn the apples over before gluing so that the black outline is not visible on the chart paper. This avoids cutting comparisons. 
Use the chart to ask questions about math. Invite children to ask their own questions based on the chart.
When the chart is complete, use it during your opening to ask valuable math questions like:

  • How many children like Golden Delicious apples?
  • How many more children like Granny Smith apples than like Golden Delicious apples?
  • How many children like Granny Smith AND McIntosh apples?

The best part is when children begin asking their own math questions!

Standards Alignment:
NAEYC – 2.C.03, 2.F.02, 2.F.04.
Head Start – I.D, X.A, X.B.

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