I Like Reading Not Math

A couple of days ago, the little ones’ preschool teacher informed me that the little ones are not very keen on doing their Math worksheets.  Jakei in particular was often adamantly refusing to answer his templates.  This wasn’t the first time he has gone home with a sad face on his hand for not working on his numbers.  Jade, on the other hand, would answer her worksheets but would do so with a frown on her face.

I love Math! It has always been my favorite subject in school! Why do my kids have an aversion to it?!

I like reading not Math was the nonchalant reply of the little boy when I asked him why he wouldn’t work on his Math template.  Both kids are advance readers and do enjoy reading books everyday.  Since they were babies, not a day passes by without a single book being read.  You can say that the love for reading has been ingrained in their lives. I can’t say the same for Math though.  But I’m hoping it’s not too late for them to love Math as well.

To encourage Jakei to be more diligent with his Math exercises, I told him that race car drivers should be very good in Math.  Aside from being a race car driver, he also dreams of being Batman when he grows up. So I stressed also that both Batman and Ironman are Math geniuses.   As for Ate Jade, I explained that she was an excellent reader because she had plenty of practice reading.  For her to be good in Math, all she needed to do was practice regularly also.  If we do Math drills everyday, she’d be adding and subtracting as fast as she could read.

Because of this, we’ve added “playtime” with Math flashcards to our daily routine.  Why flashcards?  It’s more fun!  The kids see it more as playing than learning.  Even Jakei gets excited when I bring out the flashcards.  I do hope this daily flashcards play would pay off in the long run.

Meanwhile, here’s a video of Ate Jade helping Jakei with his Math. Enjoy watching!

Toddlers’ Interactive Learning Fun With Ed Mouse at Time4Learning

Time4Learning is an easy to use online learning system that can be used for enrichment or as a curriculum for homeschooling. We were given a free 30-day trial and were able to make full use of the program for an entire month. The toddlers love Ed Mouse and have learned much using the program that we are planning on continuing our subscription.

The animated story telling and interactive lessons keep my three-year-old in rapt attention. We started out at Pre-K1 but quickly progressed to Pre-K2 level for some lessons like alphabet, numbers, colors and shapes as my daughter has already mastered some of the basics. From the second week onward, we were shifting from Pre-K1 to Pre-K2 depending on the lessons we’ve scheduled for the day. I limit our computer use to a maximum of one hour per day. So after our learning session with Ed Mouse, we answer printed worksheets which I’ve prepared beforehand.

My two-year-old son’s attention is still quite difficult to hold for more than a few minutes but we’re able to go through several lessons at Time4Learning for about 15 to 30 minutes at a time. We’re able to work on some of the Pre-K1 lessons, but most of the time he’d just be guessing which one is the correct answer. He really does like Ed Mouse but would rather be running around than sitting on my lap in front of the computer.

I tried having the toddlers go through the lessons together but it just proved too distracting for my daughter and too wearisome for me so I just had them take turns using the computer. Of course, I was always with them during their respective Time4Learning sessions.

Although my toddlers are still unable to maneuver the mouse by themselves, they are able to provide me the answers to the online activities by pointing to the correct images. This program would be perfect if it works on a touch screen computer. That way my toddlers can just tap on the correct images.

The Time 4 Learning Parent Community and Forum also provides great support for those who need help with the program and with homeschooling their children. As a new user, I was able to find answers to my queries and also got plenty of ideas for additional learning from other parents. I was actually surprised to see topics about meals, nutrition, Christianity and special needs. It’s quite nice to know that you can talk about almost anything with other parents who are also using the Time4Learning program.

Overall, the program would greatly benefit children who are already in school or are being homeschooled. Time spent with Ed Mouse is definitely more productive than time spent playing videogames or watching TV. Those who are interested in home schooling would also find that Time4Learning could be used as a core curriculum.

As for those who have toddlers like me, Time4Learning is also a fun way to bond with your tots. My little ones have been missing Ed Mouse for a couple of weeks now so I really need to renew our subscription soon. My husband and I are going over our monthly budget to include the monthly subscription for this program.

Counting with the Caterpillar

Our Thinking Tuesday session today lasted only about thirty minutes!  Boohoo!

The little boy stubbornly refused to sit still in our dining table cum study table and was quite obstinate at insisting that we go upstairs instead.  Crayons, pencils, and his other toys were to no avail.  It seemed that he was on a learning strike.  As I was not one to  force them to go through the worksheets and planned activities, I finally gave in and packed away our worksheets.

Jade was able to finish one of the counting activities though before her little brother acted up.  She was able to place the numbers 1 to 10 in correct sequential order through the caterpillar’s body. For this activity, I printed a caterpillar template then wrote the numbers 1 to 10 on colored sticker paper.

 photo countingcaterpillar.jpg

 photo countingcaterpillarjade.jpg

We were able to finish two more worksheets after this activity. Jade has almost mastered identifying which item does not belong in a group. She has also showed great progress in completing patterns. However, as Jade was starting on her third worksheet, Jakei became restless and started pestering his sister.

Not one to give up that easily, I facilitated a “Count Me” game when we went to the bedroom upstairs. The toddlers didn’t even realize that we were still learning math since we were just playing with the cards. So, I guess even if we didn’t finish the worksheets, Thinking Tuesday was still a success after all.

Easter Egg Baskets Math Activity

It’s Easter Sunday today and this morning, the toddlers and I prepared Easter cards to give away.  As with most of the activities that we do, I try to incorporate something that would hone their thinking skills.  So while creating our Easter cards this morning, I gave my little Jade a Math activity.

For this activity, I cut out small baskets from used board paper and flowers from a used gift wrapper.  On the flowers, I wrote the numbers 2, 3, and 4. I had Egg Stickers printed beforehand since we were to use them for making the cards.

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Jade’s Easter Math Activity

Here are the instructions I gave my little Jade, which I am proud to say she was able to follow without assistance.

  1. Get three eggs and place them on the pink basket. Two eggs on the blue basket. Four eggs on the red basket.
  2. Color the eggs. (This one she wasn’t able to do properly though. She was in no mood for coloring)
  3. Count the eggs on the pink basket and get the flower that shows the correct number.  How about the blue basket? The red basket?

Jade was able to count the eggs in each basket and to find the corresponding flower for each.  She has actually known the concept of counting from one to twenty for months now.  Her little brother has been able to count by rote from one to ten at an early age just by watching his sister practice her counting skills.