Fact families are a hard thing for some children to wrap their brains around. JDaniel and I recently put together some kids math activities that work on fact families. Yes, he helped me put them together. Part of having him understand tools we would need to do the activities was to help create them. I have made many activities and learning tools for him. He has helped make a number of them too. The ones that he has helped to make he was the most excited about.
“Let’s start with 1+9. Pick a star in one color and then select nine stars of another color. Then we will thread them onto a pipe cleaner. The single color goes first and then the nine other stars.” I said continuing to explain the activity.
Then I pulled out a large piece of construction paper with number sentences on the front and back. We started with the number facts on the front. I had JDaniel arrange the number fact pipe cleaners above the number fact that they displayed. We counted the beads on each pipe cleaner to make sure that they really did match. ( I think it is important for kid math activities to use various learning styles. This one uses oral written communication and hands on learning.)
When we had worked on the front of the paper, I turned the paper over to the back. The number sentences on the back were the ones from the front turned around. Instead of 1+9 the fact 9+1 was displayed. We talked about how we could turn the pipe cleaner display of 1+9 to get 9+1. The use of a visual display really helped him get it.
JDaniel decided we need to work parallel on number facts together to extend the activity. We both took turns writing number fact sentences on index cards. JDaniel took some pictures of me, but I decided they weren’t going to go in the post. I will share those lovely pictures on Facebook instead.
How else can you use these pipe cleaner number sentences?
- The beads slide up and down the pipe cleaner and counted.
- The pipe cleaner sentences are arranged with even numbers on the red pipe cleaners and the odd numbers on beige pipe cleaners. You can talk about how even number plus even numbers equal even numbers and odd numbers plus odd numbers equal even numbers. That is so cool!