Blog Archive

Dice Are Nice!

A pair of four-year-olds in my classroom are happily playing “dice wars,” a simple but fast-paced game. To play, each child rolls a die and the player who rolls the highest number wins. No one is keeping score today—and nobody seems to care who wins each round.  I watch as Juan shakes the die between […]

Smiling Boot Prints in the Snow

  Today is one of those magical winter mornings when snow blankets the ground and clings to the trees around our center.  The sun is shining and the world looks so sparkly and irresistible that we head outside in spite of the freezing temperatures. “Hey! Who has the smiling boot?” Jacoby calls out to the […]

Math, Music and Memory

  “Five green and speckled frogs…sat on a speckled log…eating some delicious bugs. Yum yum!” I hear a chorus of voices singing in our outdoor classroom as three young friends hold hands and frolic around in a circle When we sing counting songs such as “Five Green and Speckled Frogs” or “This Old Man,” we […]

Math, Music and Memory!

  “Five green and speckled frogs…sat on a speckled log…eating some delicious bugs. Yum yum! I hear a chorus of young voices singing in our outdoor classroom as three young friends hold hands and frolic around in a circle.  When we sing counting songs such as “Five Green and Speckled Frogs” or “This Old Man,” […]

More Than a Card Game

  “One, two, three, flip!”  “I win!” shouts Matif. Remember playing War as a child? It’s simple and fun and it teaches young children how to win and lose without a lot of drama. I love playing cards with young children because that little deck helps foster the development of early math and social-emotional skills […]

3 Pigs + 1 Wolf = Math Play

  “I think that wolf should go in this row, with the pigs,” protests five-year-old Harper.  “What? Why? He’s a wolf, not a pig!” insists Harrison. “And he’s not pink!” chimes in three-year-old Evelyn.  “The wolf will go with the pigs in this row for ‘Stories,’” explains Harper. “You know, like in that book, The […]

Obstacle Course Math

  “Go around the tree, through the tunnel, over the rocks, under the parachute and onto the swing. Then throw a beanbag through the hula hoop and run and touch the fence. The first person to do that WINS!” I listen as five-year-old Juan walks his eager friend through the steps of the obstacle course […]

What’s in YOUR Pocket? Collections in Early Childhood

  Do you have collectors in your midst? Those young children who can turn a five-minute walk into a 15-minute treasure hunt? The children who fill their pockets with treasures and then load up your pockets with the overflow?  I love these kids. They can wreak havoc with our daily schedules, but they help us […]

Playful Math

  “Can we play with those counting things today?” Two bubbly three-year-olds are standing in front of me with expectant smiles on their faces. I have absolutely no idea what they talking about—or what’s going on in those busy little brains, which I can almost hear whirring with activity. “What counting things are you looking […]