March 1, 2012

Two is a Pair, But Zero is Nothing

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Counting two:  Noah was obedient to God.  He brought two of each animal on the ark.  Even though Noah had to count simply "One, Two" there are many ways we can count with two.

-If your child is very young, counting to two is perfect.  Count to two for him and encourage him to count to two for you.  Count two cars, two plates, two leopards, two feet, two ears, two hands, maybe even count two years old!  So many things to count to two!

-Part of counting is knowing which number comes next, but the other part is understanding one to one correspondence.  This, of course, is the real point of counting anything.  Help your child understand each number he says corresponds to exactly one thing he counts.  Assist him in pointing to or touching the objects he counts.  It helps to be slow and deliberate at first.

-If your child is ready, try these variations:  count by twos (two, four, six, eight) - practice two to two correspondence and use snacks such as dried cranberries, nuts or M&Ms to assist you; identify and write the digit two (2) and the word two (two); discover what numbers are less than two and what numbers are more than two.

Two makes a pair:  Counting to two is a pair, not a pear silly (whoa, homophones will be another lesson entirely!), a pair!

-Explain to your child that a pair is when you have two of the same thing together: a pair of zebras, a pair of llamas, a pair of earrings, a pair of pants (each leg is technically a pant...same for underwear, I think!), a pair of pigtails, a pair of twins, a pair of eye glasses, a pair of pillows, a pair of kittens, a pair of scissors, a pair of friends.  Reference "pairs" in Genesis 7:8.

Good Read:  I think there must be a Dr. Seuss book about pairs, but I cannot figure out the title right now.  When I do, you will find it here.  If you know, please add it to the comments.  Thanks!

-Go on a hunt for pairs.  Look in your home or classroom and your yard or playground.  Older children can go with a partner -as a pair- and can record their findings in a math and science journal.

-Now that they know for sure what a pair is, tell them that a couple is also two of the same thing together!

Next Time
Zero is nothing:  When Noah, his family, and all the animals were in the ark, God used the flood waters to destroy all the remaining humans and animals.  No people or animals were left, zero.  Explain to your child that zero is less than one, it is nothing.  For all intents and purposes -at this age- there is nothing less than zero.  Unless your child is incredibly advanced, there is no reason to explain negative numbers at this age.  Whew, thank goodness!

Good Read:  Zero Is The Leaves On The Tree by Betsy Franco

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