Monday, October 17, 2011

Balloon "Pumpkin" Sort - An Even and Odd Game

The weather has us stuck inside again today, but there's snow in next week's forecast, so there is hope ahead for outdoor relief. In the meantime, I decided to mix some active play into the younger girls' math lesson.

We started out with a "pumpkin patch" of orange and green balloons numbered 1-10. I was short a couple of orange balloons to make 10, so some of our pumpkins weren't quite ripe.

The girls sorted them out, and we talked about how when we had an even number of pumpkins they could share them and both have the same number of pumpkins, but when we had an odd number, one girl always had more than the other.

Then we mixed the numbers up, and placed the balloons in the middle of the room, with the girls standing at opposite sides.

When I said go, E raced to gather all the evenly numbered pumpkins, while C gathered up the odds.

C (age 5) had trouble keeping odds and evens straight in her head during the competition, so I gave the girls cheat sheets to make things easier.

We played the game a number of times more, switching off between who was even and odd, and varying the way to collect the pumpkins, like using feet only...

...or blowing them across the room...

...and so on and so on, until the girls could remember with greater ease which numbers were even, and which were odd. Then, we gave up on math, and just had some fun free-play with the balloons to burn of the rest of their energy, before nap time.

It's great to be a homeschooler.

Phyllis said...

What fun! BTW...did you notice you added C's name?

An Almost Unschooling Mom said...

Phyllis - So much for my career as a secret agent :)

Raising a Happy Child said...

Your room looks so inviting. Love the game - a perfect way to drill some facts in.

Kendra said...

I found it easier for the younger crowd to remember fair and unfair. ;) Can I share 5 cookies with you two and we all get a fair share? Love this game idea though! Very clever.

Wonder Mom said...

{SQUEAL!} I need to add this to my little ones' activities- we have been working on odd and even numbers, and they would so get a kick out of doing reviewing it like this...

(By the way, did you hear my squeal out there in your soon-to-be-snowy state? Sorry- I get a little carried away in my excitement sometimes...) :0)

Dr Marissa said...

Saw your post on the math link up on The Learning Hypothesis. This looks like a ton of fun!

Debbie said...

I love this fun lesson. Sometimes I wish I had just one more child to play games like this with Selena, wait a minute, you know that was just a passing thought and is now long gone! Love your creativity!

Katey (Having Fun at Home) said...

Love it!

Yelena said...

Thank you for the terrific idea! I was actually trying to figure out how to teach my almost 5-year old about odd/even numbers and this was just the info I was looking for!