A lovely way to start to learn addition. Hands On Addition uses wooden strips and a board that is 18 squares across with the numbers 1-18 printed across the top. This allows all additions of any two numbers 1 to 9. The wooden strips used are printed with the numerals 1- 9 depending on their length. One set is coloured red the other set is coloured blue. Take them out of the box and lay them out 1 to 9 . Blue strips on one side of the board and red strips on the other.
Playing with the strips to make free designs helps the child absorb that they are different lengths.
A nice game to start with is to make a column of nine tens.
Have the strips laid out Blue facing both of you going from 9 to 1 and red facing both of you going from 1 to 9
Pick a nine from the blue side and place it on the board. Then pick a red from the other side and make a ten.
There is a red line down the board at ten.
Now ask you child do the same on the next line – 8 and 2. Will they place it under yours?
You can give a clear instruction where to place it or you could do the second line explaining that you are placing the line under yours.
If you do this remove the 8 and 2 and let the child repeat what you did.
Your turn again : you do 7 + 3.
Soon the child gets the idea and together you make up a nice Blue & Red design.
Next game can be to share making the number ten.
Your child takes a strip from one side and you finish with the trip to make ten from the other.
Start by working up the row of strips step by step. Then progress to “Pick a strip – Any strip”
Having the strips laid out 1- 9 either side of the board is most important for this to be doable for the child.
Another games is show the child how old they are.
Tell them the story that they were born and then they were one – their first birthday.
Change the colour of the strip for each birthday. W
When it is another child’s birthday their age can be put on the board.
Time wise is decided by the child. If they want to finish after one or two thats fine.
When the child is ready for addition the board is used to achieve addition in a physical reality. In the illustration the sum 9 plus 1 is shown.
The blue wooden strip with the numbers 9 on it is matched with the first 9 squares on the board.
The Red tile with the number one is Added On to the end of the blue tile.
Combined they show 10.
We recommend using the 1 to 9 Addition Problems and Answers together with the the Hands On Addition Board. This is not a must. You can write the equations on pieces of paper.
The quality of the materials used is important . The board is in a beech wood frame and the strips are in a customized beech wood box. This makes an positive impression on the child. They feel good and important to be working with nicely made materials. Moreover these materials are the right size for them.
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