I am a math teacher, and I am always looking for new and fun ways to incorporate math into my 4 and 6-year-old boys’ daily lives. I want my boys to enjoy math and think it’s fun. I strongly believe that we as parents can boost math confidence in our children if we introduce math to them at a young age and make it part of their daily thoughts and habits.
I try and do math multiple times a day with my kids. For example, my 6-year-old and I practice counting by 2’s, 5’s, 10’s, 20’s, etc. at stop lights. With my 4 year old, we practice number identification and counting up to 10 and 20 by 1’s. My kids also love to help me cook, so I talk to them about the meaning of fractions and parts all the time when we are cooking and baking in the kitchen.
We are a big game family, so I am always looking for games that incorporate math too. I found Games By Absolute Zero, and I am obsessed. My boys think math is fun because of one of their games, Ten Fish. This game helps children make groups of ten through the use of fish and ten frames as visuals on the cards. Both my 4 and 6-year-old can play this game. My 6-year-old can play it independently, and my 4-year-old can play it with some help and coaching. We even bring this in the car on road trips to play!
Not only is Ten Fish a great game to have on hand as a family, but I think it would be great for early elementary classrooms (K – 2nd grade) or homeschool families to have on hand for use in centers. Students will love to play the game, and by doing so, they will improve their math skills and confidence as Ten Fish supports the major academic standards of elementary math with ten frames.
One of the other reasons I love Ten Fish is that you can use the deck of cards for other math games! For example, you could use the deck of cards for Concentration, Addition War, Multiplication War, etc.
Teaching our kids to enjoy math is one of the best gifts we can give them. By using math daily at home and making it fun, we can boost confidence in our children and help pave the way for a love of math. Ten Fish and the other Games By Absolute Zero are a perfect way to build that math foundation for our kids.