Inside a kindergarten classroom with Augustana students

Recognizing Number Combinations

This week, I spent some time working with the kindergarten students on directed mathematics tasks. I began by assessing rote counting skills by asking each student to count as high as they could. I made note of their progress and will continue to monitor this skill as the weeks continue. I then spent the rest of the time assessing each student’s number recognition skills. One of the main things I worked on with the students is recognizing dot patterns on dice. Each student would roll a die (or dice depending on the ability level) and would tell me how they saw the number on the die (or dice). Each student would then draw the number and circle the groups that represent how they saw the number. For example, if a student rolled a 4, the student would then draw four dots on a white board and circle the dots in groups to show how he or she saw the number four. This was very interesting for me to observe because I was unaware that various students within the kindergarten class grouped numbers in different ways. Some students only saw the number in one way (such as 4, or 2+2). Others came up with varous arrangements including multi-step addition problems. It will be interesting to note how the students see the numbers once the skill of subtraction is mastered. My partner and I found this mathematical skill to be an interesting research question. For the remainder of the school year, we will be observing how students with various ability levels see numbers. We will also note if this connects to the comprehension of the ten frame in terms of grouping two-digit numbers as a 10 plus the remaining numbers. From the past few weeks, I have observed my students counting higher than they have before. They also recognize more shapes and are able to complete mathematical problems. All of the students have shown improvement in addition skills with the use of visual aids. Some students are beginning to understand the process of subtraction. I had one student on Thursday who enjoyed working with the problem solving application on the iPad that he wanted to create his own word problems! The students are beginning to understand the routine and are enjoying the mathematical games and tasks presented each Tuesday and Thursday :)

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