Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Teaching Greater Than > Less Than

Like so many other things, I don't really see the point of waiting to teach certain concepts until a particular age or grade. When kids are ready to get it, they're ready.
And they're usually ready before most people think they are!
Right now my kindergartner and 3-year old are at about the same academic level, (Dash is way ahead with his gross motor skills, storytelling, humor, etc. but a bit slower in fine motor skills and attention span )
So I'm embracing this, and am now grateful that I can teach double-duty for these little guys.
In case you haven't guessed it yet,
I simply start by telling the boys that the hungry alligator wants the side with more food.

He always eats the bigger number. Simple, right?

(below, my 3-year old LittleLad draws his "monster teeth," to eat the number 9)Within 30 minutes they progressed from manipulatives (poker chips and number rods, in this case) to number puzzles playing cards, dominoes, Skittles...
I should have taken pics of the Skittle Lesson. We had to turn the alligator around several times, depending on how many of their 10 skittles they ate. Soon, of course, there were no Skittles left, and we moved on to marker board "worksheet" practice.

Playing is the best way to learn!


Marlene said...

LOL, I'm 51 years old and finally understand the greater than, less than symbol in a way that I won't forget. Thanks.

I realize that makes me at about the same level as your 3 year old. Heh.

eswurtz said...

I'm working on a math/art lesson plan and had a similar idea- how did you make the ribbon monster?

Quinn said...

This is SOOOO stinkin' smart! I love it! Am totally going to use it when I teach this concept to my kiddos soon! Thank you!

Anonymous said...

I was just thinking that, I'm 32 and never really got it before! Lol

Anonymous said...

Love this idea, I think I got it for good now! Im 39.