This simple book of rhymes and pictures encourages kids to count without counting, which in my school days, was frowned upon. Whereas we were taught to simply memorize our facts and simple algorithms (joyless math), current practice holds with children actually becoming numerate. Problem solving skills and subitizing are emphasized, and kids learn that there may be any number of ways to solve a simple arithmetic puzzle. This book offers just the right number and simplicity of hints so that kids can figure out the puzzles on their own without counting.
A typical puzzle presents an array or grid of items (bugs, fruit, eggs, etc) and a catchy little rhyme that asks for the answer to a "how many" question but specifically notes that the point is not COUNTING the seeds on the strawberries, but using other methods (grouping, adding to subtract, repetitive adding or "counting by x 's", etc) to solve. My homeschooled seven-year-old pronounced it "FUN!", although we did the book...
I like this book a lot, my son is 3 and he enjoys it. It's pretty much little rhyming stories that give you hints on how to come up with the answer they ask. I don't know how better to describe it- it's a cute little book though. When I was in fourth grade my teacher made up little rhymes to teach us multiplication that I still remember today & I'm 32 lol so I hope this book will have the same effect on my kids one day.
The Grapes Of Math by Greg Tang is a book that encourages groupings of numbers in order to assist in quick addition. It shows a different way of looking at a group of objects - snails, grapes, fish etc. and looking for ways to group them into smaller numbers that are quicker to add together instead of just counting them by ones. A great sequel to Tang's book Math Fables, and perfect for when your child is progressing to more advanced work with numbers such as counting by 2, 5, etc. as a precurser to multiplying numbers. It will become easier for a child to grasp that 5 each in 4 rows becomes 5, 4 times becomes 5 x 4. This is the place in math that this book fills.
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