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Introducing basic maths into everyday life

(10 Posts)
lechatnoir Mon 06-Jun-11 10:49:58

As the title says really, just after a few suggestions how I can introduce some basic mathematics into everyday life for DS1 (nearly 6). Nothing too heavy-going as I don't want playtime to turn into a lesson or he'll switch off instantly but just some basic addition, subtraction, the concept of fractions etc.


weblette Mon 06-Jun-11 10:52:06

Cut up pizzas into slices, that'll do for fractions. Measure ingredients for baking/cooking, count cars as you put stuff away, count numbers of car colours drive...

munstersmum Mon 06-Jun-11 11:23:26

Most games played with a dice can be played with two - easy additions & snakes & ladders goes by faster !
I don't think fractions are taught until yr2. But sharing out a bag of sweets fairly well that's only polite.
Top trumps cannot be underestimated for understanding numbers. There are easy packs eg Ice Age or ELC used to do a dinosaurs one.

lechatnoir Mon 06-Jun-11 11:47:47

Thanks very much. Especially liking the idea of using 2 dice for addition & getting him to measure out ingredients and will investigate top trumps as I can see these appealing if we can find a character he likes.

HappyMummyOfOne Mon 06-Jun-11 11:57:34

Orchard Toys do some great games and there are several with a maths element but you dont even notice when playing - cant recommend them enough.

Jan010 Mon 06-Jun-11 13:46:50

What about counting objects (like the number of smarties) then talking about adding or subtracting?

Looking for patterns in clothing, carpets, tiles etc.

Simple multiplication using arrays- ie if the chocolate bar is 5 squares long and 2 squares wide, then it's like 5 + 5 or 2 + 2 + 2 + 2 + 2 or 5x2 or 2x5. That might seem quite complex, but you could try it.

How many stairs are there? Can he count them in 1s and 2s? How many stairs does his left foot touch?

Which cup will hold more? How can you test it? Which cup will hold half of the water in the big cup?

How long do different activities take to complete? Which is quicker- cleaning his teeth or putting on his pyjamas? Time is tricky, but you could look at what can be done in 30 seconds or which things take longer.

Carolinemaths Mon 06-Jun-11 14:46:40

Great ideas so far! Some more ideas in this blog post 15 Fun Ways to Stop the Deadly Maths Summer Slide. For a 6 year old, the maths stories and multiplication raps would work well.

wednesday13 Tue 07-Jun-11 13:16:46

Ah, you want the "Maths for Mums and Dads" book, we got ours from school. It has lots of hints about things like calendars, cutting up cakes, oldfashioned thermometers, and goes right up to secondary school IIRC. I'm quite geeky to start with but I still got some ideas.

DS is the same age and likes: handling money, cooking, computer stuff, timing things (microwave), car counting or "legs" game while travelling, measuring with a tape measure. He will do anything related to cars or trains.

Shut the Box is a good game for adding up dice and quite absorbing too.

pozzled Tue 07-Jun-11 13:28:41

You can definitely get a lot out of cooking, measuring ingredients etc. The supermarket is also great- which tin is cheapest, can you work out how much cheaper it is, if there are 6 rolls in a pack, how many in 2 packs etc. Look at car licence plates- who can find the biggest/smallest 3 digit number, what other numbers could you make using those same 3 digits but in a different order? Another area where parents can help a lot is with time- make sure he is confident with both digital and analogue clocks and get him involved with timing how long the cakes are in the oven, or checking the clock to see if it's time for a particular TV programme etc.

Jezabelle Tue 07-Jun-11 13:40:31

I'd second the orchard toy games. Also counting in 2s, 5s, 10s each time you go upstairs. When I was a child, my dad used to play the minute game with me. I would count to 60 and say "minute" when I thought a minute was up. Gave me a good sense of how long a minute lasted, and gave my dad an easy life too. He just sat there looking at his watch!

I bought a 1-100 square recently (ebay or amazon I think). I have it on a door and although we don't look at it all the time, it's always there and sometimes she'll just go up and try and read a number, like 64, (DD in reception), then I can ask her to find 74 and point out that it's like adding 10 on and that it's directly below. All helpful stuff.

Measuring's easy to do. Could measure a sunflower once a week and record results on a basic table. Or do similar by measuring rain with a marked up wooden spoon and recording it, (like they do on Cbeebies blush)

I am trying to get DD to recognise coins just now. I try and keep lots of change on me then take her to the shops to buy something small like a pint of milk or a lolly if I'm feeling generous! Then she can read how much it costs and help me count out the money.

I love the 2 dice idea too!

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