Tuesday, 28 October 2014

Simple Maths Games to Make Yourself

Maths Games

Here are 3 examples of games you can make yourself to reinforce maths concepts with your children. I have used these games in my class with my three and four year olds and all of them are very effective in teaching important maths concepts and a lot of fun. They are quick and very simple to make with things that you have lying around the house.

Fishing Game

Number and colour recognition, turn taking and development of fine motor skills.

The children can either choose a colour and catch all of the fish in that colour or catch all of the fish and sort them according to number or colour.

I used plastic files, number stickers and magnetic tape.

Spider Game

Number recognition and counting using a die.

Get the children to identify the numbers before you begin and then roll the die. 
Use a homemade die with the numbers on it or a traditional die if your child is able to count and or recognise the number of dots.
After rolling the die, find the corresponding spider and position on the web.

I cut out the spiders, drew the spider web and laminated them so they can be used again and again.

Snake Counting

Number recognition, counting and ordering numbers. 

This activity is a wonderful fine motor activity and promotes imaginative play.
The children need to identify the number on the snakes head and then thread the correct number of beads on the body.

I cut out the snakes heads, laminated them and stuck them to pipe cleaners.

This was so much fun that we got carried away with the number of beads!!!!

Let me know what you think or if you have any questions, leave me a comment.

Tuesday, 21 October 2014

Cutting Station

When teaching my class of three year olds to use scissors I always start with lots of pre-cutting activities and build up to cutting playdough and spaghetti. I begin by focusing on holding the scissors correctly and being able to manipulate the scissors correctly. Once they have mastered this and we have discussed using scissors safely and what is appropriate to cut ( not hair!!!! ) I move on to snipping. This is a lot of fun as you don't have to worry about staying on a line, just snipping something into little pieces. This week we have had a lot of fun snipping at our Cutting Station.
I set up our Cutting Station in our water trolley.
Firstly, I tied six pairs of scissors to the water trolley.

I then put out a variety of items that the children could randomly snip into little pieces....straws, strips of cardboard, strips of paper, wool and crepe streamers in bowls.

After a quick revision on using scissors correctly we began snipping....and snipping.....and more snipping..

The water trolley was fantastic because all of the mess was contained.

The children absolutely loved this activity. You should definitely give it a go.

Tuesday, 14 October 2014

The Sleeping Princess - Draw a Story

Wooohoooo my second YouTube clip!! 

The children in my class ask for this story at least once a week so I thought I would share it with you. Let me know what you think.


Tuesday, 7 October 2014

Halloween Sensory Spaghetti

My class absolutely love playing, cutting, painting and printing with cooked spaghetti.
This time, I let the children hide plastic spiders in the cooked spaghetti.

The children added black paint to the spaghetti to make it more difficult to find the spiders.

We counted the spiders before we started and then counted each spider when we found them. The children loved squeezing the black spaghetti and feeling around for the spiders.

Once the children had found the spiders, I let them make black spaghetti prints.
The spaghetti prints are fantastic- don't you think?

We were also fascinated by the patterns on our hands!!

It was a lot of fun!!

Tuesday, 30 September 2014

Creative Uses For Ice Cube Trays

We seem to have accumulated a lot of ice cube trays in my classroom and I use them regularly in many different ways. I thought I would share a few of these with you.

I wrote the numbers from 1-10 on mini pegs and pegged them onto the sides of the ice cube trays. The children had to roll sausages from the playdough and cut the dough into small pieces. They then had to count the cut pieces of playdough and put them in the ice cube trays.

I filled the ice cube trays with coloured dye and let the children experiment with colour mixing to create beautiful paintings. Using the eye droppers is also a great fine motor skill.

After dying penne pasta, I put out tongs with the pasta for the children to fill each ice compartment. The children did one piece of pasta at a time which was also a wonderful counting activity.

I froze some dye with little matchsticks as handles. The children had to start at number one and paint in order from 1-5 by painting over each number with each colour. They also painted all over the page- they are 3!!!

I got some recycled plastic bits from our local recycling supplier and let the children fill a variety of containers, including ice cube trays. Sensory play is one of their favourite things to do.

Thanks for visiting

Tuesday, 23 September 2014

Square Fun

We made a really fun, practical and useful resource recently at school. We had been looking at a different shape each week and this is what we made in square week.

Square Bean Bags!!
I cut out small squares of black fabric and wrote the children's names on the front.

The children then printed squares with a square foam block and white fabric paint. Some chose to do the squares in rows and others did it randomly.

Once dry and ironed a lovely mother brought her sewing machine to school and sewed up the sides, leaving a gap to fill the bean bag.
At each step I asked the children to find their name as we are working on name recognition as well.

Using funnels and spoons, the children filled their bean bag with rice. We counted the spoonfuls, estimated how much rice they would need and kept feeling them to see if they were happy with the weight. The children loved being responsible for their bean bag and enjoyed each and every step.

The mother helping us then sewed up the last open gap. Our bean bags were ready to play with!!

As it was square day, I made a large square on the mat and we had fun throwing our bean bags into the square.
We drew squares outside with chalk and threw them into the squares.
We threw them to each other, in the air, into buckets and baskets and everywhere!! Each time, the children had to find their own name and they were soon reading and finding each other's.

This was a simple activity that the children absolutely loved- you just need a very kind person to man the sewing machine so you can do it all in the classroom.

Tuesday, 16 September 2014

Bark Painting

We had some pretty big storms here last week with some very strong winds. While I was driving I noticed some large sheets of bark that had blown straight off some paperbark trees.
I thought this was an amazing opportunity to do some bark painting with my kids at school and to talk about Aboriginal art.

We used colours that are often used in Aboriginal art and sticks and cotton buds to paint with.

I drew some simple designs for the children to paint.

As I had set up this painting activity outside the children collected other natural materials like small flowers and tried to paint with them as well.

This activity promoted so much language and was a wonderful sensory activity.

I love it when you find something interesting like this which provides the inspiration for so many learning experiences. My program didn't include Aboriginal dot painting last week but proved to be wonderful spontaneous teaching opportunity.