Families Making Maths Fun.

Families making Maths Fun!

The group will meet every other Wednesday, starting on January 21st 2009.
Adults will meet at 2.45 and then the children will join us when school finishes at 3.15.
The aim of the group is to explore ways in which families can have fun together and at the same time help their children learn key mathematical skills.
Families will be given resources and shown how to play some favourite family games, likes Snakes and Ladders, Dominos and Monopoly.
We will look at ways we can play simple games and chat about numbers in the environment.
Week 1. January 21st 2009.
Getting to know each other, and talking about how we feel about mathematics.
Maths in the environment -
This week we will talk about how on our walk to school and home we can play games with numbers we can see.
Car Registration plates - who can spot the highest number - or who can make the largest number using the digits on the plate.
House numbers - whats the house number? Look at the pattern of the numbers - on the houses you walk past - now try and work out the number of the end house. When you get to it, check if you were right.
Maths games to play at home.
This week children will be given a laminated game board for Snakes and Ladders, and a game called Number Bonds to 10. They will be given dice and counters to play with and we will have a quick go so that everyone knows the rules. Once we have mastered the games, we can also play by rolling the dice twice and adding the 2 throws together.
Links for playing Maths games on the Internet.
Click on the blue words to go to the website with this weeks games.
Number Bond  game board
This is an excellent web site with lots of games that children will enjoy, while still practising their maths skills.
Nintendo DS.
If your child has a Nintendo DS - the game Maths Play has been trialled in some school and reports suggest that it does improve childrens mental recall of maths facts. At present the children in 2 Red are taking turns on it during Target Time, and they are certainly very keen!
Week 2. February 4th  2009.
First many thanks to all the families who came to the first meeting, and I hope that maybe there will be even more of us at the second meeting.
It was fantastic to see so many families playing snakes and ladders and well done to the children that have been to tell me that they have been playing the game at home with their brothers and sisters.
Maths in the Environment-
This week we will talk about all the mathematics you can look at if you go to the local supermarket with your children.
Each family will recieve a copy of I-spy Maths at the shops, which children can take with them to the shops.
Below are the pictures from the I-spy booklet, and some of the suggested questions to chat about.
Do we need a basket, small or large trolley?
How many wheels on the trolley?  How many wheels on 4 trolleys?
What shapes can you see in the trolley?
Look at the weights of the bags of fruit. Use the scales to weigh out your own fruit.
If you have 5 portions of fruit and veg a day, how many is that in a week?
How much fruit and veg would your family need if they all had 5 portions a day?
Which bag of apples is the cheapest? Is it the best value?
Look at the capacity of the different squash, coke, water or shampoo bottles?
Is the biggest bottle always the best value?
Look at the different weights of the cereal boxes. Is the 500gm box half the size of the 1kilo?
Look at the egg boxes? How many eggs are in the box? How many in 4 boxes?
Could the eggs be packed in a different way?
If you were going to spend X on biscuits, which packets could you choose?
How many socks are in the value pack? How much would each sock cost?
How many days can we keep this food before it must be eaten? Is that more than 1 week?
What do the lines on the hot cross bun divide it into?
Times tables can be practised throughout the shop.... Kitkats and twixs, shoes and socks for 2 times tables.
Boxes of 6 eggs are in rows of 3's and also some containers of puddings. Drink tins, baked beans, tinned tomatoes come packed in 4's.
Count on 4 each time you pass a trolley! ( 4 wheels) Some small chocolate bars come in packs of 5's. Eggs and yoghurts come in 6's.
Look for arrays of items on the shelves for 7,8, and 9, or put that quantity of fruit in a bag.
Pick up a ticket from the deli counter- how many people need their turn before yours?
Counting and number spotting - the CDs, DVDs and books are all arranged in popularity. Which DVD is the second most popular this week?
Let your child be involved in packing the shopping - encourage them to think about the weights of the items they are putting in the bags.
Will that bag be too heavy and break? Try to sort items as you pack- things for the bathroom, fridge, freezer.
Let them see how the shopping is paid for and give them the till receipt to look at.
Shopping really is a super opportunity for children to see how maths works in the real world.
Games to play at home.
This week the children will all be given a laminated set of dominos. We will look at how this game can be used with young children to encourage number recognition and matching. It can be extended to help learn doubles - totalling up the 2 joining sides. Tables and addition can be practised by totalling or multiplying the number of dots on each side of a tile before placing them down. (The link below has more variations on the game too and children will be given their instruction sheet.)
Again we will practise the game together before the children take home their dominos.
Maths on the Internet.
This link takes you to a fantastic site with lots more maths games. Particularly good are the machines for practising skills such as Number bonds and tables.
This link takes you to a site to download dominoes to print out and also instructions.
Andrew Jeffreys is coming to Hovingham Primary school to do his Magical Maths show on February 10th.
http://www.andrewjeffrey.co.uk/default.asp - this is the link to his site.
It promises to be a fantastic show, and should inspire and motivate us all.
Parents who are part of the "Families making maths fun" group, will be notified of the time of the show their child is attending and they can come to the show too.
Meeting March 11th 2009
This week we are going to look at the game 'Bingo.'
Each family will take home a laminated 100 square - for the Bingo caller and a set of 5 different laminated Bingo cards. A dry wipe pen will be in each pack - so you can reuse the set as many times as you like.
It is best if and older sibling or adult is the Bingo caller, because the level of maths practised will depend on how the caller calls the numbers. The simplest method is to say the numbers and the players just look for the corresponding numbers, but the maths can be extended by saying the numbers as a problem... 2 lots of 10 and 5 units, or as answers to table questions ... 5 times 5.
When the children come to join us after school we will play a game together!
We will look at the range of Lotto sheets that can be picked up in the supermarket. While not suggesting that you pay to play the real games, the sheets can be picked up to play pretend games at home.
Hand-outs will be given of the 'Ideas and tips' to help you child with maths at home - from the BBC schools website.
Numeracy websites on the BBC website also will give your child lots of practise at maths, while they are having fun too!
Play Mrs Fishers game to practise your 2 times table. Click on 2 cards - do they match? Try to remember where the matching pairs of questions and answers are.
Sort the numbers into even and odd. Tell someonw how you did it. Can you put each group in order?
Click on 2 cards - do they make 20? Keep goinguntil you have matched all the pairs of numbers that make 20. What's the fastest time you can do it in?
Meeting Wednesday April 1st.       
This week we are going to focus on the importance of teaching children to think logically - 'if i do this.... what will happen next', as this is a key skill in mathematics. We will talk about how maths follows patterns and so if our children can recognise a pattern it helps them to understand maths.
We will look at games that develope this type of thinking skill - such as Connect 4, where they have to think not  only about themsleves getting 4 in a row, but also stopping their opponent getting 4 in a row first. They need to think... if I put my counter there... where will they go? what happens if....?
Another essential maths skill is the ability to be able to explain ones thinking... games such as Connect 4, can also encourage this.... ask 'Why did you make that move?'
Each family will take home a laminated Connect 4 game board and counters to play with... you just need to remember that in Connect 4 the counters usually drop to the bottom of the board. We will play the game altogether when the children come to join us. Decide how many games you are going to play....maybe the winner is the person who wins the most games out of 5 or 10. This adds conversations about how many more times you need to win.... also at what point is there no point playing more.... if you are playing best of 5, and one person has won 3 games... is there any point playing more? This opens up the conversation of mathematically in terms of winning - no, but in terms of getting better and maybe winning next time .... yes.
This link also takes you to an online Connect 4 game - this allows you to play with a partner, or against the computer, and in the against the computer mode, you can select different levels of the computers ability. Within the site, there are lots of other games too.
 This link takes you to the home page for the link above.... the whole site is full of useful ideas, games and puzzles, and as the site name says, it does show that 'Maths is fun!' 
This link takes you to a page where you can print off free sudoku games for children.
Sudoku games in most papers need you to put the numbers 1-9 in each box and row... this is a daunting task for many adults, let alone children, so it is best to show childen simpler Sudoku games and then as they become more skilled at it, then you can make the games more challenging.
Sudoku is an excellent game for developing logical thinking skills.
We will work through a couple of examples together and each family will get some Sudoku sheets to take home and enjoy.
Wednesday April 29th 2009.
This week every family will take home a set of number cards from 1 -100.
We will look at games that can be played with the cards.... but don't forget too that children often enjoy making up their own games, or may just enjoy playing school with the cards.
Higher, Lower game.
This game is a bit like the television programme, 'Play your cards right,' but instead of using playing cards, we can play it with number cards. For younger children you can select the cards from 1- 20 or 1-50. Use a number range that your children are familiar with.
  1. Place the cards number down on the table. Each player chooses 1 card.
  2. The player with the highest number starts by selecting a number card and turning it over.
  3. The next player selects a card and before turning it over, guesses if it will be higher or lower.
  4. If they are right they place the card down before the first card if they said lower, and after if they said higher.
  5. If they get the answer wrong they have to take the card that is turned over and that goes in a plie in front of them. The turn moves on to the next person.
  6. The winner is the person at the end who has had to pick up the fewest cards.
The object of the game is to help children with ordering numbers. It also encourages children to think about where numbers are on the numberline. If they are playing with 100 cards and the card showing is 85, then it is more likely that the card they have will be less than 85.
Click above for link
Click above for link.
This second game encourages the player to think about the probability of the next number being higher or lower.
I am planning for us to finish with a special 'Families Making Maths fun!' games extravaganza! with the children joining us for the whole session, so we can play lots of games together and maybe find a family of champions!
Please let me know your thoughts and ideas.... so we can plan this together.
Meeting Wednesday May 12th.
This week lots of the children in school will be doing assessments and Year 6 are doing their SATs.
I hope that tonights group meeting will show us that maths really is lots of fun, and that there are lots of games we can play to practise our skills.
Every family is going to get a pack of playing cards and we are going to look at the different games and magic tricks that we can learn with these.
We will learn a magic trick which Mrs Fisher has learned from the book that she bought from the maths magician, Andrew Jeffreys, when he did his magic show in school. There is also a version of this trick on the website n.rich
You need to take 10 cards out of the pack and place them in this order, with 3 at the top of the pile.
3.  5.  ace.  8.  jack.  2.  4.  6.  7.  9.
Remember that Ace is worth 1 and the Jack is worth 10.
Spell out 1, o...n...e....turn the card over as you say e .... it is the ace. Put it down on the table.
Continue by spelling 2, t....w....o... turn the card over as you say o, it is a 2. put it on the table.
It works all the way to 10, as long as you spell the numbers correctly!
Then we will learn how to play some card games that will get us doing lots of maths and having fun too!
 This link takes you to lots of different card games you can learn.
We will learn how to play 'Wild card.'
You need to take out the Queens, King and Jokers from the pack.
The Jacks are the 'wild cards', they are worth any number from 1 -10.
To start play you need to decide on a 'Target number.' You can select the Target number by picking 2 cards, (10 or Jacks go to the bottom of the pile) and use these 2 cards to make a 2 digit number. ( Select 4 & 2 - Target number is 42.)
For games with younger children you may choose to use a number such as 20 as the target number.
Each player is dealt 5 cards.
Using any operation - addition, subtraction, division and subtraction - you try to make the Target number.
If you do it using all 5 cards you score 10, 4 cards - scores 8, 3 cards scores 6, 2 cards scores 4.
When playing with younger children, lower the Target number and limit the operations to addition and subtraction.
When playing with younger and older children you can put in scoring for helping others as well.
Older children secure their learning by explaining how to do something to their younger brothers and sisters.
Number bond Patience.
It's always a good idea to learn how to play games that you can play on your own.
This version of 'Patience', as well as only needing 1 player, will make you really good at number bonds.
Remove Queens, Kings, Aces and Jokers.
Jacks count as zero.
Deal cards out into 4 piles.
If you deal a card that makes a numberbond with any of the top cards, move the pair of cards and place in a pile face down.
Put unmatched piles of cards back together and keep going.
(Encourage children to build up speed. Number bond knowledge helps with maths when the recall is fast and accurate.)
This game could be changed into a 2 player game, similar to snap - but when you place a card down if it matches a card and makes 10, you would say 'snap' and win that pair.
If you want more reasonably priced sets of playing cards try QLM - in Meanwood, Leeds, and 'Works', in most major cities - in Leeds in the Merrion Centre.
June 3rd Meeting - In the computer suite.
Using the Internet to support children's learning in Mathematics.
This week we are going to meet together in the computer suite to explore some of the games which children can enjoy on the Internet - and omprove their maths skills at the same time.
Firstly - we will think about the importance of teaching children to how to be safe on the Internet.
 web link i keep safe   web link ICT safety Click on these pictures to link to great sites about keeping safe on the Internet.
Children should be supervised on the Internet. Teach them to not give details like their name, age, address or telephone numbers.
 Lots of games to practise your maths skills. The site will ask you if you want to join - ask an adult to do this with you... but you can play the games with out joining the site. Games can be chosen at a full range of abilities.
Single player and multi player games. The games can also be played with a wii.
You can change the timings on the games so that you have more time to play the game and then speed it up as you get better!
So many different games here it will take them along time to explore them all!
Again a fantastic site... activities are sorted into sections - so choose the skill you want to improve and there is sure to be a game for you to play.
The number bond machine is a great way to speed up your numberbonds and you can set the number to test you on any number bond.
This links to so many other maths sites too... you will never run out of maths games to play online now!
Lots more games- and the site has a links page too.
I will keep adding to this list!
Let me know which are your favourites and if you enjoy any other sites too.
Next meeting is on Wednesday June 17th.
Also make a date in your diary for June 29th when it is Numberfun day - and parents who attend the group will be very welcome to come and join in too.
Remember too that this term we are having 'Hovingham's got talent!' I will be setting some maths challenges - could you be the fastest at your tables?
Practise, practise, practise! and of course, have fun!

Powered by Create