Can you help me, please?
When our kids are little, we can play some basic games with them. Having a toddler put blocks in order, counting how many spoons are in the drawer, and figuring out the remaining number of plates should go at the table for a big dinner are easy ways to spark a conversation about mathematics. However, as our kids get older, the challenge becomes finding a task that is engaging for them and attainable for the parent.
In the image above, I needed to take the spade bits out of their holster to hang it on the wall. As I started to put them back in, it became evident that I was the wrong person to take on this task. Bringing my two kids (6 and 4) over to the workbench, we sorted the bits using spatial reasoning and some number sense with fractions.
Don't let the age of my kids fool you; this is a good prompt for middle school children as well! Maybe you don't have spade bits, but you might have measuring cups, measuring spoons, or picture frames. Whatever it may be, there is a conversation to be had.
For our high school children, it might mean including a wild alternative.
Here are some tips on using Visual Prompts at home:
I wonder how...
Can you help me put ___ in order?
What if we took it a step further?
Hopefully this week's Table Talk Math has your dinner table sharing ways in which math can serve a conversation.
If you need a visual for the tau measuring spoon, see the post below that might be more suitable for a more challenging puzzle. Not sure what tau is? Take a peek.
If you have any questions, please feel free to contact us on Twitter (@TableTalkMath) or reply to this email.
Thank you for taking the time to improve math fluency for children, one table talk conversation at a time.