I really want to make sure that the kids do not develop a fear of Maths. I want them to be confident in Maths and I want them to understand it. I have found that with my kids one of the ways of really getting the Maths concepts to sink in is to use manipulates. My daughter in particular likes to be able to hold things while she is learning. She likes using 3 Dimensional objects to help her and when she does she seems to understand it.
In the past we have used a number of different counters. We have some mini fishes and some mini dinosaurs which my daughter used to help her understand addition. We used a number tub (still do with the youngest) where she had to dig in amongst the beads and buttons to find her numbers. The number tub was such a hit that it is now considered a toy by the kids.
We have also used our hopscotch mat for lots of jumping Maths – great for counting, skip counting and adding and subtracting fun.
But our latest favourite maths tool are our snap cubes (affiliate link). Ooh we love our snap cubes. We have been using them a lot in past few months and they are still a firm favourite with both my kids.
My youngest loves using them with his counting cards. The cards in the picture are his stick man counting cards that we made using the number posters from Twinkl (gold). We printed 4 to a page.
He has also used the snap cube with his number train. His number train is still his favourite number activity. It is FREE to download from Twinkl for numbers 0-20. We printed ours off ages ago and initially just gave him numbers 1 -5 and then extended to 10 and are just introducing the larger carriages now.
My favourite, in the photo below, are these very cute number dinosaurs. These dinosaurs are gold on Twinkl and are for numbers 1-10 but you could also download these FREE dinosaur posters numbers 0-20. (I would try to just print 4 to a page to make some very cute counting cards)
He also loves using the snap cubes for building tall towers.
My daughter has been using the snap cubes a lot lately while we work on her bigger numbers. In fact today they provided the lightbulb moment. She has been trying to add 3 numbers together but gets a bit stuck, today while using the snap cubes it just all clicked into place. 5+5+2 =12. Once she had figured that out she started adding different sums with 3 numbers in her head.
The cards my daughter is using here are these great base 10 cards from trusty Twinkl (platinum).
She has also used them last year with the autumn themed Maths cards from 3 Dinosaurs
I think these snap cubes would probably make it into my top 10 great educational tools to have in the house.