For Librarians Who Secretly Wish it was “S.T.E.A.” and not S.T.E.M…
When I was asked to do a math-related program as part of a S.T.E.M. grant, I freaked out. Math has been my nemesis since third grade, when I realized that I could not do quick calculations in my head, or for that matter, slow calculations. Science, I could do- fun experiments, facts about animals, space and machines, that was easy.
Do a story-time for preschoolers, my grant coordinator urged. Basic math, like shapes, counting… I remembered to breathe. Ok.
I did a little research, and my eye stopped at a picture of dice. Dice? That was math? I slapped my forehead. Hello! Gamer! Reading dice uses a skill called subitizing, where you can look at a collection of items and know the number without having to count each one. I put together a take-home kit for the kids (I visited our local pre-school) with a printed game-board* I designed, one die, and a flyer about our library.
- One is a Snail, Ten is a Crab by April Sayre- counting by feet. A snail has one foot, and a crab has ten!
- How Many Jellybeans? by Andrea Minotti. Could you eat a million jellybeans? You might change your mind after you see
how many that really is!
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