Head to the game cupboard: it’s time for a domino line-up
Dominoes are little gems from math heaven. I’m telling you. So much math learning in these tiny little rectangles and I’ll start you off today with a great one: the easy, the simple, the domino line-up.
RELATED: Curious how I teach my preschooler at home? Check out my activities program: Playing Preschool.
So much math in such a tiny package!
Dominoes are a fun game, but they’re a GREAT tool to use with kids and math.
Dominoes are ripe with number sense and a great way to teach kids to subitize numbers – that rapid ability to see a group of objects and instantly know how many without counting it.
What all is going on in this domino line-up activity?!
Um… a lot!
In this activity, my daughter (4) is:
- counting with 1:1 correspondence
- subitizing numbers
- combining two numbers (intro to addition)
- recognizing printed numerals
- creating a graph
- understanding that numbers can be composed of different numbers (think 5 is made of 1 and 4 & 3 and 2)
That’s a lot of math from some dominoes and Post-it notes.
Don’t I know it?! (insert dancing lady emoji here). This activity kills it with hands-on learning.
How do you set it up?
So glad you asked.
Here’s the 411 on this activity’s set up:
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On the post-it notes, write the numbers 1-12 (check your dominoes to see the range of numbers you need to do). Each number is composed of adding both sides of the domino together.
I set all the dominoes out and showed my daughter how to count all the dots, then place the domino next to the number it represents.
Someday, she’ll understand we are talking about addends and sums, but today it’s dots and counting together and finding which number each domino “goes with”.
RELATED: Need another way to use dominoes? Check out this counting game from Days with Grey!
Why is an activity like this better than a worksheet?
Sure, my daughter could work on some of these same skills on a worksheet or in a workbook, but that would be one-dimensional learning (and I’m not raising a one-dimensional kid).
Instead, by making this a hands-on activity, she’s learning with her whole body. She’s playing and laughing and using loads of different learning styles to grasp each concept.
She’s making a lasting memory and a lasting connection with the math – that’s not something that a worksheet can offer.
RELATED: I’m just not a fan of worksheets. Wonder why? Here’s my answers.
It’s time to try dominoes with your child!
Head to that game cupboard, find the old box of dominoes you haven’t seen in years, and let your child get their math on.
You won’t believe what all a child can learn from those little rectangles.
When will you make a domino line-up?