Published at Saturday, 19 September 2020. Reading Worksheets. By Nicola Vaillant.
Play a magnetic fish game with cardboard fish with a paper-clip and a piece of dowel and string with a magnet on the end as a fishing rod. Count the fish in the pond. When one gets caught subtraction how many are left? Division can be as simple as a sharing exercise. "There are 4 people here and I have 8 counters. Let us see how many we will get each". Use play dough or counters or blocks to make groups of items. Talk about what happens when you put groups together (multiplication). Make the terminology you use simple. This age group need simple language instead of mathematical terms. These activities are laying the foundations for further learning.
The answer for the above question is hidden in a simple example. I always give the example of stairs to my students, and giving the same example in this article. I compare the steps of a staircase to the concepts in mathematics. As this is very hard to reach higher floors of a building without stairs (or elevators these days), same way learn higher concepts in mathematics without learning basic concepts is very hard. People have to start from the ground, then first step, second, third and so on to reach their destination floor. Exactly the same way students have to start from Kindergarten, then grade one, grade two and three and so on to reach their math destination. Also, if some of the steps are broken in the staircase, it is still hard to reach the desired floor using those steps. Same way, if you are missing some of the basic concepts from elementary grades, math for you is still hard.
NEVER use "skill and drill" worksheets. These are the worksheets just made up of columns of problems. There are better materials out there, so do not resort to skill and drill. The very worst problem of skill and drill worksheets is the greatly increased chance of a practiced mistake. The same problem will likely appear several times on the same sheet. A wrong answer once means a wrong answer several times; and a practiced mistake takes hundreds of correct repetitions to fix. This danger alone is important enough to never use any worksheet. I am quite serious about how difficult it is to repair a practiced mistake. Learning is hard enough. Re-learning is much more difficult.
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