Tuesday, January 3, 2012

HOW-TO-TUESDAY: math helpers

When it comes to homework, I try to find the best ways to help my boys without adding to their frustrations (and mine).... and while math isn't a huge problem for them, I have found that making a set of counting grid cards has helped to make math a snap and a little more fun....

I found a great site, HomeSchoolMath.net.  This is a fantastic site that allows you to generate your own grids, or to print ready-made grids.

I generated my own, without blank spaces (for math helping purposes); counting by 1's, 2's (odds and evens), and 5's.  You can also print 10's and 25's and 100's, but you can also just use your counting by 5's grid for those numbers.

Here are two of ours....

As you can see, they're laminated.  I can't tell you how much fun my guys have had with these being laminated.  The added bonus of paying a little amount of money to do this is that it makes them dry erase.  My guys love writing on white boards! And, you can pick up dry erase markers on the cheap at any dollar store.

Our grids are double-sided.  When you print your grids from HomeSchoolMath.net, you'll be able to fit one on an 8.5"x11" sheet of printer paper.  To make it double-sided, run your paper back through the printer so that the next grid prints on the backside of the first.  Yeah, it's that easy!

And, here's a hint: for your counting by 5's grid, use a highlighter to colour code all of the counting options on that grid:  5's, 10's, 15's, 20's, 25's, etc, etc....  This should be done before the lamination process.  I only did the 10's on ours, but next time, I'll use highlighter to colour the boxes in completely, and do all of the counting combinations.

So what can your child do with the counting grids?  Well, counting, for one....  And both adding and subtracting.  Predicting (what number comes next).  Sequencing and patterning....  I'm sure as my guys progress through math and graduate into older grades, these grids will find new uses.

Another great little math helper, to assist the emergent adders and subtracters....

This is a blank helper that I made up, it shows the 1's, 10's and 100's columns, there's space at the top for carrying numbers, and space along the left to add your + or - signs....  All you need is a math equation and some dry erase markers.  I'm taking our adding helper to be laminated today so it'll be ready for the boys when they return to school next week.

Please note:  When the lamination process is done, do not cut too close to the paper as you'll create a separation in the laminate, and remember to round and cut corners as they are very, very sharp.

Hopefully these little helpers will aid in making homework time a little less stressful.  Have a great day  ;)

1 comment:

  1. I have a laminator - if you ever wanna borrow it or come use it ;) if you don't have one.