Math In Kindergarden

Math Instruction in Kindergarten

Classroom Teacher:  Emily Puente

Instructional Strategist: Sherry Johnson

Math Requires Authentic Instruction

 

The Math Activity

applesDuring the month of September we completed different math activities with red, yellow and green apples. We loved these activities because it promoted different areas of our school curriculum within one thematic unit. We used the apples for counting, graphing, measurement, patterns and tasting. I had each student bring in one red, one yellow and one green apple. The first thing that we did as a class was sort the apples by color, then we sorted the apples by size. After we sorted the apples, we used them for measurement. We measured the circumference of the apples, the height of the apples and we checked to see if the apples would sink or float. We counted the apples by 1’s, 5’s and 10’s. We also used the apples to make different predictions. We predicted which apple flavor would be our favorite. After we predicted, we tasted the three different colors of apples, then we graphed our results on which kind of apple was our favorite. We assessed our students with inquiry based questions about apples. This helped me know and understand if my students mastered the skills that were taught with the hands-on learning that took place.

This Activity Promotes Higher-order Thinking Skills

apples 4These different activities are full of higher-order thinking skills. My students are hypothesizing, explaining and generalizing their own ideas with other students (Villate, 2015, slide 5). While completing the different activities, my students are making a hypothesis about that they think the results are going to be with the apples. They are predicting how many apples we have, do the apples sink or float, what do the apples taste like and which flavor will be their favorite. The students record their predictions on index cards. After they find out the results of their predictions, they check their hypothesis with the answer. The complex thinking that my students experience while doing each of these different activities helps them remember their learning.

This Activity Promotes Inquiry-based Discovery

apples 3This activity was perfect for inquiry-based discovery. My students were able to use hands-on materials to investigate their learning, while activating their existing knowledge bases to question the unknown (Villate, 2015, slide 5). My students had not experienced putting an apple in water to see if it floats or sinks. Giving my students the opportunity to experience putting the apple in the water helped them answer their own questions to the unknown. My students had also never predicted before how many apples were in a large group. My students had to make a hypothesis about how many apples they thought we had all together. After they made their hypothesis, we counted the apples as a class. My students also learned how apples grow, where they come from and if it is a fruit or a vegetable. Learning this information helped my students gain insight on new information that they were unfamiliar with about apples.

This Activity Connects Students to the World

Apples are a part of our life. They apples 2are a food that keeps us nourished. I feel like the more that my students learn about things that are in our life, the more real the information will become. All of my students knew what apples were, but they all did not know the different aspects about apples. They were unfamiliar with sinking or floating, measurement, making a hypothesis, etc. My students were able to use their knowledge of apples, to connect with the real world around them. They will take the knowledge and information that they have learned and apply it to real life. This will help them as grown adults make decisions about what kinds of apples they need for eating and cooking. They will be able to decipher between the different kinds of apples and how they are different.

This Activity Promotes Mastery

During the activity I asked my student inquiry based questions. I called each of my students over to my reading table one by one during another portion of my day, to ask each student questions. This helped me to gain an understanding of what each student in my class learned from all of the different math activities. I also observed my students when we were completing the activities, to check to see if they were completing the work and understanding the meanings behind their results. Conversation was a key component with helping me understand if the students were understanding. I checked for mastery with having conversations with my students. I wanted my students to be able to verbalize their understanding of the taught material and to be able to justify their thinking.

Reference

Villate, V. Instructional models [PDF document]. Retrieved from Lecture Notes Online Web site: https://luonline.blackboard.com/bbcswebdav/pid-1656571-dt-content-rid- 13053475_1/courses/PEDG_5370_T02_2015_60_AP1/Assets/PEDG%205370% 20Week%203%20Slides%20and%20Script.pdf