When to start

To count babies begin much earlier than many believe. Already in 18 months – that tender age, when many babies still do not have a speech or developed motor skills – children are actively interested in the number of subjects, developLearning to count begins in infancy: evidence from 18 month olds’ visual preferencess their own strategies for calculating them and react nervously enough to specially mistaken mistakes related to numbers.

Therefore, the first games for acquaintance of the child with the account can begin already in one and a half year.

However, it is important not to hurry up and not to expect miracles from very young children. The ability to notice one’s own mistakes and establish clear patterns connecting the figures comes a little later – between 3 and 5 yearsLearning to count begins in infancy: evidence from 18 month olds’ visual preferencess. It is this age that is considered optimal for the beginning of meaningful mathematical exercises.

10 easy and fun ways to teach a child to count

1. Use digital examples more often in a speech

By the age of 3-5, the baby already has a good vocabulary and is curious about the words that are still incomprehensible. The more often you hear numbers in your speech (“It’s time to wake up: already eight!”, “We’re waiting for tram number 3! And this one is No. 11, he does not suit us”, “You’re three years old, and Misha from the kindergarten already four” “To take this bun, you need to give your aunt 12 rubles”), the more attention the child will give to them, curious and trying to penetrate the essence.

2. Read wherever possible

You can count the steps. You can count down the seconds before the elevator doors open. You can use the counters before starting any business: “One-two-three-fir-tree, burn,” “One-two-three-four-five – ran.” It is important that the kid understands: figures are not something abstract, but part of everyday life.

3. Include the kid of the song-counting with the video sequence

This is one of the most accessible, simple and fun ways to introduce the child to the figures, their order and the simplest rules of addition and subtraction. Surprisingly, this sounds, but most effectively children learn mathematics when they hear a familiar and understandable oral speechTransforming the Workforce for Children Birth Through Age 8: A Unifying Foundation.

On YouTube, for example, there are a lot of songs-counters that you can include a kid on a trip or sing along during the day. Here is a modern city song-counting in Russian:

But a beautiful English-language collection for the youngest:

In general, choose what your kid will like – and forward: watch, listen and sing along.

4. Link the figures to the development

The simplest example – marks on the gaming rostomere . “Look, on your last birthday, your height was 92 centimeters, and now it’s 100! Let’s measure you in a month – interestingly, will you grow to 101 centimeters? “The preschooler is actively groping for her place, herself in the world around her. He already realizes that he is growing. And the numbers that grow with him, cause a natural interest as one of the ways of knowing yourself.

5. Play the Sorters

Sorting is one of the most important mathematical techniques. We separate even numbers from odd ones, integers from fractional ones, simple ones from composite ones … Naturally, to such concepts the kid is still far away, but the logic of future arithmetic actions can be taught him already in 3-4 years.

For this purpose, toys-sorters are well suited : with the help of holes of different shapes the child learns to divide various geometric figures.

How to teach a child to count: Play in sorters

But toys do not stop there. Sorting is quite affordable in everyday life. For example, you can offer a three-year-old to lay out towels in stacks: white – in one, blue – in another. For a four-year-old, the task can be complicated by suggesting using two different sorting methods at once: “Could you separate the white towels from the blue ones first, and then put all the big white towels in this basket, and all the small ones into this basket?”

6. Build

Kids love to fiddle with all sorts of designers from cubes and blocks. And this desire can be used as a way of teaching elementary mathematics. For example, to build a house, you need four walls. A hole in the fence around the house (for example, done by a toy tractor) can be closed with one block … Oh, no, one block is not enough! And how much do you need? The child himself will realize that two or three blocks are required, and thus come to the idea of ​​multiplying objects.

7. Buy a child lego

With the help of bright plastic bricks, divided into different number of identical parts with rounded “thorns”, the preschooler learns to feel the length: here on this block there are two “thorns” – it is short, and on that – three, it is longer. Lego helps to easily master the addition: because if the length of the brick is not enough, it can always be lengthened by combining with the other.

But not by adding a single … Subtraction, actions with fractions, the square of a number, the search for the average arithmetic – that’s what you can learn while playing with lego. About the nuances of the lego-mathematics for the youngest, the Lifehacker wrote here .

8. Use mnemonic cards

This is familiar to many cardboard pictures, where the figures are displayed next to the corresponding number of objects. For example, 1 can be displayed next to an apple, 2 – with a pair of bananas, 3 – with three cherries and so on. The main purpose of such cards is to create a stable connection between the figure’s image and its actual value.

It is good, if similar mnemonic elements will meet the kid as often as possible. For example, magnetic cards can be hung on a magnetized child’s easel board or on a refrigerator. From time to time, without bothering the child, it is important to go with him on the cards, counting from 1 to 9 and back. This fixes in the memory the sequence of the account and the understanding of what is hidden behind abstract and yet incomprehensible to the child words like “two”, “three” or “nine”.

How to teach to count: Use mnemonic cards
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Well, that the kid himself was interested in messing around with cards, there are models “with a secret”. For example, sliding apart .

9. Read on the method of Montessori

The legendary teacher Maria Montessori in her book ” My Method. Guidance on the education of children from 3 to 6 years old “said that almost the best results in the training of preschool children showed the account with money (or their models).

I give the children coins in one, two or four centimes, and with their help the kids learn to count to ten. The most practical way to teach children a bill is to show them coins in their use, and the most useful exercise is the exchange of money. Such exercises are so closely related to everyday life that they arouse keen interest among all children without exception.

Maria Montessori

In the next stages, mathematical games with other objects are connected. For example, apples: their child is invited to count and distribute equally to all children present). Or, say, cups, when the baby is asked: “We will now drink tea, bring so many cups to be enough for everyone” (that is, the child must first calculate the number of people present, and then bring the necessary quantity of utensils).

How to teach a child to count: Count according to the method of Montessori

Also, Montessori considered it necessary to connect mathematics with sensations. It can look like this. Offer the child several brightly colored sticks of different lengths (they can simply be poured on the table) and ask for the eye to choose the longest. When the kid makes a choice, ask, is he sure that his wand is a champion? For testing, compare it consistently with others remaining in the common heap. Well, if each of the sticks will be marked by its length in the form of a noticeable number: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 centimeters and so on. So the child will learn to feel the length.

10. Use the Glen Doman technique

American physician Glen Doman believed that the brain of a small child is much more powerful than it is commonly believed: it is capable of instantly analyzing and perceiving huge streams of information, even if it seems to adults that the baby “does not understand anything”.

Doman’s method is based roughly on the same principle as mnemonic maps: on the connection between numbers and what they designate. To start, Doman asked his parents to make cards from cardboard: on one side they write a number (in the case of 2-3 year olds, from 1 to 10), the corresponding number of clearly distinguishable points is put on the opposite side.