Wednesday, April 6, 2016

Addition Snake Game

Bubs has been settling in well with the addition snake game these days.  I think he will be ready for the subtraction (negative) snake game soon.  He just figured out how to check his work with the control of error built into the materials.  He loves to make extremely long chains, but then quickly gets overwhelmed in the middle of it.  Then he goes to the opposite extreme and makes a snake with three bead bars.  What are ya gonna do?!

The snake game is quite an interesting material and is a fun way to learn the different ways that you can make the number 10.  The child lays out a combination of bead bars in any order in the shape of a snake (or zig zag).

Here is a sample snake that Bubs worked on today.  You can see the three sections of the material.  The left box has the 10 bars which will be used for exchanging.  The middle box has colored beads for making the snake.  The right box is for the beads for the black stair.  The black stair is used as a place holder when counting.

He starts counting each bead bar until he reaches 10.  In the picture above, there is a 3 bar, a 5 bar, and a 4 bar.  The red pick thing (Ok, I don't know what it is called, but it looks like a guitar pick!) holds the place for the child while he gets the 10 bead for exchanging.  So, 3+5+2 is 10, but you still have 2 more beads which are part of the 4 bar. That is why the red pick is in between the beads on the 4 bar.

Here, Bubs has gotten a 10 bar (which takes the place of the 3 bar, 5,bar and 2 of the beads from the 4 bar).  He took the 2 bar from the black stairs to represent the last two beads from the 4 bar.  Now he will put the 3, 5, and 4 bar in the cup on the right to show that he has counted them.  He then starts to count again up to 10, starting with the black 2 bead bar.

He continues through the snake, exchanging for 10 bars along the way.

When he is finished, and has worked with it for some time, he does the extension of checking his work.  He places the 10 bars that he exchanged at the top of the mat.  Then he lays out all of the bead bars that he counted from the cup underneath the 10 bars.  He lays them out from smallest to largest, notice the 1 bar on the far left side.

To start checking his work, he places the largest bead bar (9 in this problem) next to the 10 bar.  Then he looks to see how many more beads he needs to equal 10.  He needs a 1 bar.  He takes it from below.  Then he takes the next largest bead bar (8) and moves to the next 10 bar.  He sees that he needs a 2 bar, but only has a 3 bar.  He then exchanges his 3 bar for a 2 bar and a 1 bar from the middle box above. Then he adds the 2 bar to the 8 bar to make 10.

He continues with the 7 bar and using the 4 bar below to exchange for the 3 bar needed.

He keeps exchanging,

Yay!!!  He ended up with no beads left over.  So how many beads did he count?  50  (There are 5 10 bars.)  He was very excited to get his answer right because this meant that he could go upstairs for snack!  Stay tuned for the negative snake game hopefully soon.

Saturday, April 2, 2016

Spring break field trips!

I just thought I would share a few pictures from the various places we visited while the kids auntie was here visiting.  Enjoy!

Shark at the aquarium

Rock fish anyone?

Cool boat kids saw

Waterfall inside the aquarium

Trail to the river

Racing to catch up to auntie

Exploring in the sand

Weaving a huge basket

Skateboarding perhaps

She is trying to balance on a kayak.

They failed miserably trying to build an igloo with foam pieces!

Good ole White House

Brotherly love.  Nito was trying to put T-Man to sleep.

Lincoln Memorial

First plane by the Wright Brothers
The kiddos had a great time while auntie was here.  There wasn't much schooling, but we can count these field trips right?!

Friday, April 1, 2016


Happy Easter Everyone!  We took this week and part of Holy Week off last week, but I wanted to share something Bubs has been interested in lately. 
 I had made this clock for Kui a few years ago and it seemed to work perfectly.  I was never a fan of the Judy Clock that most primary classrooms use.  I am not sure why, but I think they just don't look very user friendly. However, I love the idea from this site.  The child is able to manipulate the clock and move around the pieces.  There is also the work of putting the numbers in the correct order which is definitely something that needs to be learned by the child.  I found this out with Bubs.  When I started working with Kui, she already had the basic idea of a clock and the numbers that were on it.  It is not understood that the child will pick up on this automatically, especially if they are only exposed to digital clocks.  I have gotten a digital clock for their rooms just so they can learn to tell time the "old-fashioned" way.  I also purchased these stamps for Bubs to peruse once he has all of the parts of the clock mastered.  These just allow an extension to the clock work and.... who doesn't like stamps, right?!
The picture above shows Bubs working with the clock with a bit of an extension.  He already knows how to label the hours (red circles) correctly starting with 12 at the top.  He then added the minutes (green circles).  He wanted to add the hours around it "just because".  It is helpful for him though when he is making the time that I have asked him to make. 
Further extension of this work are the seconds (blue circles -not pictured).  This allows the child to understand the concept that one hour has 60 seconds.  Bubs is not quite there yet, but hopefully soon we will get there along with writing out the times and using the stamp pad.  Shhhhh.....he doesn't know about that yet.  I wouldn't want to rush him through the critical manipulative stage!