Today I started working on visualizing quantities 1 to 5 with Jeanna. I say visualization, because I’m teaching her to count with quantities, instead of just counting with one to one correspondence. The best way to explain why I’m doint this is is to read Joan Cotter’s insightful article on young children and math: http://www.alabacus.com/pageView.cfm?pageID=314
I hadn’t read any of this when Bruce was little, so my husband and I taught him how to count with correspondance, before teaching him any visualization strategies. But then he started at a wonderful Montessori program, nine hours a week at age three, and his math really started taking off. By February of his second year there, when Bruce was four, he was ready for first grade math. All of that was due to Montessori, and their wonderful focus on visualization, grouping strategies, manipulatives, a lots of fun activites to practice. I’m very eager to try this method with Jenna here at home, and see how far it will take her.