math sightings

diverse materials, deliberate placement, space, lines, rows.
Early childhood math.
Could look like so many things.
So many many things.
Think exploration.
Think diverse materials.
Think open-ended.
Notice hand-eye coordination.
Notice pattern.
Notice geometry.

You can think that math has to look the way YOU understand math...Yet, how wonderful to have math look how CHILDREN understand math.

vertical experiences with small objects: color, shapes, and whimsy.

geometry, half, quarter, pizza slice; solid color & rainbow circles.
small motor, triangles, squares, rubberbands, paper/pencil copy.
partner experience with unusual block puzzle...exploring balance and design.
kapla and wood blocks, dinosaurs: intentional design, purposeful placement.

car line parallel to large block structure; top, cube blocks center spaced within each wood brick.

can you crayon and water color your own shapes and patterns?
creating a circle using cube blocks takes focus and curving and rethinking.
these paper shapes were placed exactly where this child wanted them - size, shape, color.
creating patterns with friends using pegs, dominoes, and colorful bugs.
variety of colors of rubberbands to complete this star design.
using peg boards right-side-up and then up-side-down, pegs supporting a second level of work, bears and dominoes in rows...this kind of work is no accident.
Look for math around your classroom.
You will see it everywhere.
Use the language, interpret the work, scaffold the 'almost there' idea of patterns and math sense.
Provide the materials that allows for the exploration and thinking of numbers, shapes, patterns.
Math sightings occur daily... get your camera ready.
this is a challenge game to identify a friend's pattern and then to REcreate it!


  1. Jeanne I used to love it when parents would come to me and say "Oh how can you say you teach maths to a five year old?" I would simply show them all the examples you have shown in this post. It usually left them gobsmacked ... I always got a real kick of it tho!
    Donna :) :)

  2. Thanks Donna! Exactly, yes. I have found that when an educator knows what s/he is talking about and can articulate it and provide examples to parents/guardians, then they go with it. When educators are unsure of what is happening, then parents are unsure as well.
    By the way, I will try to use the word 'gobsmacked' this week - it is way underused in the United States :)


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