Math Reflection: Interest of the Child

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My last math class was full of knowledge about teaching strategies. Knowing the subject or being an expert means you can introduce to young student a new concept for the first time. Today we discussed how activities can be modified according to individual needs. It is important to plan activities according to the developmental level of every child. Interest of the child should be main concern while planning strategies. If a child has short attention span and can be easily detracted, we should make his/her task simple and short. I believe that a child can achieve best under conducive environment making it easy for him to hear, observe and learn.

In the beginning we talked a little about previous week’s topics like paper pencil is easy for teacher not for students. By working with materials, students build concepts in math. For example if we are doing polygon, students have shapes for coloring, cutting and even pasting on sheets. We were also shown an example of drawing in Tan gram by dividing it half way. Labelling is a way to engage students in math activities. I like the idea of drawing on foamy and cutting it out for my students to learn more while playing.

Isometric grid paper can help students pick pattern blocks. 3D shapes can be colored by students. By coloring different shapes, recording on isometric paper and playing with these materials can broaden their vision in math. Recording of pictorial presentation can be made showing examples of house and different objects. Seeing and learning can help them understand the concept.

Our instructor explained, the importance to introduce mathematical terms to the students. As students move beyond basic addition, subtraction, multiplication and division, math-related concepts can become a little more challenging. Teaching math-related language (i.e. vocabulary) is probably the best starting point when teaching concepts and processes students will come across during instruction, activities and assessments. We can move ahead as we see that students have established and have a firm understanding of the term.

We discussed some measurement attributes. For example, choose things extra, time, temperature, length, width, parameters, area, volume etc. Students can learn in easy way by taking things from the daily life like potatoes, apples, oranges, carrot and banana etc. We can give them different opportunities to use tools like ruler, balance scale, different size rocks for estimation and comparing. We also talked about statistics about posing the question and collecting or reporting of data. We can teach them by giving them task to interview each other about the color they like and how often they see red or yellow. They can use tally marks to write down the observation, further they can represent it on the graph.

We discussed about shapes in math and different ways and activities through which we can introduce different shapes to students. Firstly, starting from easy shapes and allowing students to play and process before moving on to the other shapes. By providing shapes from surroundings, students may think more deeply about other connections. They may look for different shapes in their toys or in fruits, games, blocks and furniture. Even they can make shapes with play-dough.

Using elastic bands to make different shapes will deepen their understanding of math. We can suggest different things from our daily life, like paper towel rolls, cardboard boxes of cookies, shoes and let them sort by shapes. In high grades, we can incorporate different strategies to help children know shapes by using specific names. For instance, By using prefixes, like tri for three, quad for four, penta for five, hexa for six, hepta for seven, octa for eight and so on. In order to build the concept of shapes we need pattern blocks, colored pages of the different shapes to cut. We can use the same activities which instructor demonstrated by displaying the squares diagrams. She asked if we cut it then would it make a cube and guessing to make a pyramid with the triangles. Geo boards can also be used to make different shapes is another way to engage children. I know that would be very motivating for the children of grades three and four to work on.

During class I found m&m’s activity very interesting. Going from estimation, sorting and frequency m&m. By putting them on graph, axis of tally and doing favourite was very engaging activities. Use of tally marks is a good idea to engage students. They can count the marks individually if needed, but skip-counting by fives first makes finding the totals of each categories quicker. Tally charts are useful research/data tools, they can also be helpful in record-keeping throughout the day, behavior plans, class or group decisions, or to keep students engaged in a different activities, such as running, walking laughing, and Jumping.

During class activity on chart we recorded information from numbers to percents and estimation was collecting by going from table to table. We did estimation in the past classes many times. This time we were given another task beside the estimation. It was fun playing with those edibles and some of us ate them at the end of activity despite the warning of expiry by instructor. Here it was very beneficial knowing that program of math is like a spiral, it comes back almost every year to refresh and add on to the previous knowledge.
At the end of our book, there are lists of many books on different concepts, which I find a great source to consult while working with children.

I learned a lot from “instructional strategies across the Curriculum.” The instructor introduced a lot of manipulative and taught us how they can be used. There are many fun things for me to take along from this course. Different concepts of math can be taught to children in a very fun loving environment i.e. through play, as play is considered vital for children’s optimal development. Children need time, materials, space and support of the adults to thrive in their life.


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Math Reflection: Interest of the Child. (2020, Sep 26). Retrieved from https://samploon.com/math-reflection-interest-of-the-child/

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