Preschool math is all about recognizing numbers, reciting numbers and basic correspondence counting but in kindergarten and first grade math skills will really start to add up. Counting money, telling time, patterns and place value are just a few of the skills on the math path when children start elementary school. Having a few good math manipulatives and learning toys in your home can be a step in the right direction.
A good hands-on clock toy can help speed up to the hour until your young child can tell time.
A manipulative clock toy is a math must have for five to seven year olds. My favorite is the Melissa & Doug Wooden Shape Sorting Clock.
The numbers 1- 12 are actually wooden puzzle pieces that are different colors and shapes. The clock hands are different colors and have the words “hour” and “minutes” written on them. There are clear and countable dots for minutes as well as numbers for every five minutes. The inner clock is sectioned with the time telling words quarter past, half past, quarter till and o’clock. With so many features, this math toy will be helpful for many years. You can find more teacher tips for Teaching Kids to Tell Time here.
Cash in on math skills with a fun cashier register toy.
Mom and dad, you can shop ‘til drop with a toy cash register or tray of play money. Playing store several times a week helps young math students learn to recognize, sort and count bills and coins.
Kids can count on cubes for math for years.
Colored cubes are another great math manipulative that can be helpful in so many ways. My favorite are the Plastic One-Inch Cubes by Ideal School Supply. This set of 100 cubes come in 9 colors.
These cubes can be used to teach adding, subtraction, simple fractions, patterns and even place value. Counting cubes are very handy for hands on math homework help. A good old fashioned wooden abacus can be helpful too.
Measuring cups teach volumes of math.
A set of their own colorful measuring cups is a math smart gift for kids. There are so many, many tasty ways to Teach Math Using Cooking.
Help kids measure up in math.
Having a child’s growth chart, a kid-friendly cloth measuring tape and fun ruler in your home is a great way to play math a few minutes every day. Get kids familiar with the language of inches, centimeters and feet by measuring often. Kids love measuring anything from their bike tires to their toes.