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Saturday, November 6, 2010

November Math Stations... plus a few extras!

Our "warm-up" for math stations this week was decorating our tipi covering. We started by watching a clip on Youtube of a family assembling their tipi. We then gathered around our tipi covering (a half circle of 2 bulletin board paper strips taped together) with one child starting the pattern - a zig zag. He then passed the crayon to the next child who kept the zig zag going. This continued all the way around the circle. We then added another element to the pattern using the same procedure. It turned out great!

The finished product!

I always have a counting station - this was "Count the Room". He counted the Indians and then recorded the number on the matching shape of the recording sheet.
Pattern is another skill that needs lots of repetition. This activity provides a great way to get kids THINKING and PROBLEM SOLVING - which is what math is all about. An added bonus is the level of fine motor ability required! Great practice and a beautiful outcome!

We also decorated our drums while practicing pattern.

I was amazed at the patterns the kiddos created given only 2 elements. 

Another favorite is measurement - which provides for lots of counting, counting, counting! Not to mention number/set match. She even added the pattern!
This station is always a hit with the boys! I've decorated these pins with beaks, eyes and waddles. The kiddos bowl and record on their paper how many they knock over. I drew x's on a page of chart tablet paper for easy set up.
This station works on number order. Each child has a set of feathers numbered 1-8 and a turkey body. Each child spins and adds the matching feather to the turkey. The "thinking" part of this game is where in the number line to add the feather since the numbers will spin in random order.

More pattern practice - in, out, in, out, etc.
Each child has a basket, tweezers and a recording sheet. I use the 30 second timer to keep the number low.   Each child takes a turn being the "timer-keeper". When time is up, each child adds their feathers bad to the turkey as they count. Then, they record their number. There is always discussion of who had the most/least.
Every year about this time we begin our symmetry study. This turkey is a fun warm up!
  During the week of symmetry, the Indian vest is one of our stations. The kiddos paint one side, then fold the vest over and rub, rub, rub! Symmetry! An added bonus is that we wear these during our Thanksgiving Program. You could also have the kiddos design one side of the vest with die-cut shapes, then build the other side to match.
This medicine bag and papoose provided more practice with pattern. The "corn husk" doll, made with a lunch bag, was a perfect baby for the papoose!
We made our "corn husk dolls" after watching a short demonstration using real corn husks. I demonstrated with real corn husks, then we made these together. This wasn't a math station -  just for "extra".
This is also an "extra". We write the room during centers. This particular recording sheet provides extra practice with our "star words". 


  1. I swear, you are wearing me OUT!! I see these things on your blog and then I HAVE to do them, too!! The corn husk dolls and tipi are incredible, Suzan!! You do know you are Teacher of the Year material!!!! Ok, well, I'm going to have to get Greg busy with the tipi and I need to make some corn husk doll samples!! I love it all, Suzan, and I love you, too!!

  2. You're so crazy. :-) I love you, too! Let me know how it all turns out. We bought the wood at Lowe's for 89 cents per piece. There are also bamboo sticks at Dollar Tree. They aren't as long, but make a great "kid" tipi.

  3. I agree with Mrs. Hicks, you are so amazing! I want to be five years old and be in your kindergarten class! xo Patti

  4. SO GREAT! where did you get the pictures of the Native Americans for measurement?

  5. Amazing is the word! I love the turkey feather and body pattern, where did u find it?