News from Mathnasium of Aiken
Welcome to Aiken! Who knew horses can help kids learn math?
Aug 20, 2019
Aiken is known for horses. Whether it's out in front of the Aiken Center for the Arts or cruising down one of our town's stately thoroughfares, statues of horses aren't hard to find in Aiken. We love our equine traditions, and many of our friends and neighbors are connected in some way to the horse industry.
But who knew that horses (and other animals) can be used to help teach kids a crucial concept in mathematics?
Long before a student learns the words ratio and proportion or even understands the idea of multiplication, we teach them how to make groups. Making groups is one of the fundamental building blocks of mathematics. With a horse, we can make groups of 4 legs, two eyes, 4 hooves, etc. And once a student learns how to make groups then they are ready to use the groups to solve another problem. We call this Reasoning in Groups.
Here is a page out of our early elementary curriculum. The student is asked to determine how many groups of 2, 5, 10, and even 20 zebras can be made out of 10 zebras. This little exercise teaches students how to make and count in groups and even how to make a group of one-half. The next exercises ask the student how many horses are there if you see 12 legs, 16 legs, etc. This exercise teaches the idea of making and counting in groups which helps student understand repeated addition as a prerequisite for multiplication.
Once a student learns how to make and count groups, then we can begin to Reason in Groups. This is the classic "2 lemons make a glass on lemonade, how many lemons does it take to make 6 glasses" question. In reality, this is proportional reasoning. But with visualizations using horses, zebras, lemons, and candy we can teach kids to understand the idea of ratio before they even learn the word "ratio." Understanding. This is the heart of Mathnasium!
Call us at 803-226-9090 to learn how your student can developing stronger Number Sense today! We look forward to partnering with you!
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