Whew! Last week was QUITE a week! For those of you who are Facebook Fans, you already know about the stomach virus that has been terrorizing my house. Asher was throwing up for 4 days and JR & Robert caught it for 2 days. Last night was the first night since Monday that a sick child wasn’t sleeping in my room. A mother’s life of service is never more evident than when nursing sick children. It is a gift and a curse at the same time. Let’s just say I’m glad it’s over.
Today was such a breath of fresh air to return to our normal schedule of school work. John Robert had a particularly strong work cycle in which he read CVC words, worked with the object boxes, created pictures with the pattern blocks, put together his skeleton puzzle and reviewed addition with the number rods. There are so many educational extensions you can do with the number rods that I thought I’d share a few with you.
1. The traditional use of the Number Rods is to line them up shortest to longest. The ideal set up has all the red units at the beginning so the red and blue units match up across the rods. You can also add the sandpaper numbers or other numerals for the child to place next to the units.
2. Here’s an extension to teach your child the concept of larger (or greater than) and smaller (or less than). Place the rods randomly on one side of the room (on a rug if you have one). Sit on the other side of the room (by another rug if you have one) and ask your child to bring you the smallest rod. Next, ask him to bring you the rod that is “one bigger.” Continue until all of the rods are lined up next to you.
After, mix the rods up randomly and move across the room. Ask your child to bring you the largest one. Next, ask him to bring you the rod that is “one smaller.” Continue until all of the rods are lined up next to you.
3. Use the number rods to teach early math skills, such as addition and subtraction. Write a plus sign (or minus) and equal sign on paper. Choose 2 sandpaper numbers to put on either side of the plus sign. Find the rod that is the same amount as the first number and place it under the number (5). Find the rod that is the same amount as the second number and place it under that number (3). Count the two rods together and find the sandpaper number that matches the sum. Last, find the rod that matches the sum and place it under the two rods as a self correction. Does it match? Once your child understands the concept, have him create his own equations.
So, that’s where we’re at today…working hard on school work and feeling really grateful that the illness is over! I hope you are having a great start to your week too!