Wednesday, October 19, 2011

A Serious Sandbox:Math Monday

Another lesson I introduced the kiddos to was using a drawing compass to create shapes in a sandbox. It may appear to be a primary lesson but it is indirectly preparing them to absorb some geometry concepts, like different types of lines, angles, use of the protractor,etc. One thing that I have been able to find is some of the whys' to some of the difficulties they have been having with mathematics. For example during one of our lessons working with the Fibonacci Numbers concept it became very clear to Ken and myself that her problems with solving 4 digit muliplication or 3 digit division has nothing to do with her knowing her multiplication facts but has everything to do with understanding place value. Math is one subject that if you miss a step, well you will be stuck for a while. From my experience children usually aren't interested in subjects that they feel are challenging for them. I am blessed to be able to work side by side with my children everyday and love making learning as fun as possible in hopes that the challenges will be fun, as we will celebrate our mistakes along the way. They are taking their time absorbing concepts before they whoa the world with their intelligence:)

 This activity comes from the book Math Wizardry For Kids by Margaret Kenda and Phyllis S.Williams

  Materials  Needed
  • Sand or Corn Meal
  • A large sturdy container
  • A ruler or flat stick
  • String
  • Two short sticks or pencils
  • A drawing compass if you wish                                                                                             
You need the sticks and string to create your own compass, so that the child will be able to create shapes in the sandbox.

The pictures show how DJ used the ruler to smooth the sand before using the compass to create shapes, and then a circle shape that he created with great concentration. We have had hours of fun discussing shapes and patterns!!

Linking this post to Math Monday hosted by love2learn2day.


  1. This is a fantastic post. How old is the child i the picture? I would love to show this on my blog!

  2. Mrs.Coe- Thank you for stopping by and leaving a comment. My son DJ is seven years old. This is a wonderful activity, I bet your students would love it!


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