Thursday, July 7, 2011

Travel Math Game



Here's an educational boredom-buster for car trips this summer!  And it only takes a few supplies and a few minutes to make.  Depending on your child's age and skill level, you can make this an addition, subtraction, or multiplication game.

Supplies:
Metal tin with clear acrylic top (I found mine at Michael's for $2.99.)
Craft foam
2 10-sided dice
Small round magnets
A few marbles or plastic pieces of some sort to use as playing pieces
Tacky glue

1.  Choose a really fun looking tin!  It has to be metal (so it is magnetic), and it needs a clear top, so you can see the dice.
Here is the label on the back of mine, so you can see the brand and size (6.75" diameter).

2.  Cut craft foam to line the bottom and sides of the tin.  This is really, really important!  If you don't line the container, it will be SO noisy when it is shaken!  You could use felt instead, but craft foam is super cheap and deadens the sound better.  If you don't know what craft foam is, this is the label from mine:

3.  Glue it in place with tacky glue.  Here my daughter is helping me.

I only had scraps of foam laying around from previous projects, so I had to piece it together.  That's ok -- it is all about sound insulation, so it doesn't matter if it takes multiple pieces.

4.  Next you need to attach a game board to the outside of the tin.  If you are using the same size tin, you can download a game board here
Print it out on paper, cut it out, and tape it on with clear packing tape.  I don't have a picture of myself taping this in place, because I can't tape and take pictures at the same time!  But here it is with the game board already taped on the outside.

Put the dice inside, and, if desired, use the packing tape to seal the tin so it can't be opened.  That way, the dice cannot escape during use.  However, then the playing pieces can't be stored in the tin.  So, it is up to you.

5.  The only thing left is to make the playing pieces.  Use some more tacky glue to attach your glass beads or marbles to the magnets.



All done!  Ok, here's how to play (but you can always make up your own rules, of course!):

Awesome Addition!
Shake the tin five times.  Add up the two numbers on the dice.  If you get the answer right, you get to move your piece that many spaces.  If you get the answer wrong, you don't move on this turn.  Play passes to the next player.  Win the game by reaching the finish square first.

Super Subtraction!
Shake the tin five times.  Subtract the smaller number from the larger number.  If you get the answer right, you get to move your piece that many spaces.  If you get the answer wrong, you don't move on this turn.  Play passes to the next player.  Win the game by reaching the finish square first.

Marvelous Multiplication!
Shake the tin five times.  Multiply the two numbers.  If you get the answer right on the first try, you get to move your piece 3 spaces.  If you get the answer right on the second try, you get to move your piece 1 space.  If you get the answer wrong both times, you don't move on this turn.  Play passes to the next player.  Win the game by reaching the finish square first.

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Giveaway Winner!

Thanks for entering my giveaway!  I used Random.org to choose the winner.  And the winner is...

cre8tivecrys!!!

Crys, I will be in contact for your address to get that sent out to you!


Coming soon... a travel math game!

I have an idea in my head for this game.  I am off to find the supplies today!

Sunday, July 3, 2011

Preschool Plans Now Available

Check out the new page on this blog that has Preschool Lesson Plans!  There's a tab up at the top to click on.  I have added Weeks 1 - 3 so far.  There will be 36 weeks total (which is the standard length of a school year in this state), and they will be coming soon.  I have all the planning done, so it shouldn't take long at all to get them up. 

I am excited about these plans.  I think that they reflect our family's education philosophy for the early learner.  We believe in lots of unstructured play time and a fairly relaxed attitude towards formal schooling at this age.  I definitely do not want to push my child before he is ready for written work, as that is a skill that might developmentally be too difficult.  So these plans limit the writing to a couple of workbook pages per week. 

The plans are based on a letter of the week, and when we run out of letters, then we do a number of the week!  Each day, there is a lesson based on Handwriting Without Tears, followed by a craft project or an activity.  The supplies needed are all things we already have around our home.  Often, the activities and craft projects can be completed with the older and younger siblings as well.  I hope you find these plans useful and helpful in your homeschooling!
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